The Sea And Cake, Everybody

Andy Battaglia

By Andy Battaglia

on 04.22.11 in Reviews


The Sea And Cake
Chicago post-rock veterans return for another go-round of breathy, delicate pop.

Ever since they sashayed out of the Chicago post-rock scene in the mid '90s, the Sea and Cake have concentrated on a sound that plays like the rock equivalent of a pinky finger extended from the edge of a glass with a carefully mixed gin & tonic in it. The band's albums have all been delicate, precious, a little bit prissy — and masterfully made in a way that translates as invariably breezy and approachable. The same goes for Everybody, on which the Sea and Cake's considerable smarts settle into an urbane mix of summer songs. “Up on Crutches” has an insistent guitar strum evocative of Brazilian music, while “Too Strong” features a flecked and melodic lead that hints at charts learned in jazz school. Playing spot-the-influence is part of listening to songs so mannered — it certainly figures into the extremely African-sounding “Exact to Me” — but singer Sam Prekop keeps his allusions grounded with a breathy voice that sounds both dressed-up and desperate.