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Better In Color

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Editors’ Notes

The Pica Beats’ literary bent and smart-pop essence get more pungent and striking with each release. Ryan Barrett’s voice has a sort of mystical knowing about it. (“I should never have gone outside/on the word of the pious alone!” he muses; "There is trouble ahead/and there are trials to tread,” he warns.) Yet there’s familiar warmth that’s comfy and inviting. In the past, The Pica Beats’ tunes often changed shape halfway through, starting as a semi-folk pop brush in pastel and ending in a bigger, bolder stroke of dark thoughts. But on Better in Color, most tunes percolate on fairly sparse constructs of simple percussion and electric guitars (gone are the sitar and acoustic guitar) and stay there. Hooks aren’t so evident, though haunting melodies and a specter of trouble is a steady thread. Not many bands can work in such downcast moods and still exude the beauty these guys and gals are capable of. The album ends on a heartbreaking and elegant note of hope with the singularly lovely “Work in Progress.”

Customer Reviews


I love this band, they just keep getting better and better!


Genre: Rock

Years Active: '00s

A Seattle-based indie pop outfit, the Pica Beats were formed in 2005 as a solo project for singer/songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Barrett (2007's self-released All Mysteries Solve Themselves was primarily a one-man show). Looking to expand his sound, which by this time included everything from sitar to bassoon, Barrett teamed up with drummer Colin English and a small army of friends to begin work on what would become the newly expanded collective's Hardly Art debut. Beating Back the...
Full Bio
Better In Color, The Pica Beats
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  • $9.90
  • Genres: Rock, Music
  • Released: Sep 07, 2011

Customer Ratings