The Soft City

by The Soft City

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    10 track CD LP

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Heaven is Above Your Head:

Band of the month at Don't Die On My Doorstep last month was The Soft City, a British band started by Phil Sutton of Kicker (and Comet Gain). They sound similar to Kicker (but even better!) and it seems my previous confusion of them with The Soft Set seems justified aurally as well as literally. Their first album is out now on Plastilina and includes ten fantastic songs, and my favourites are the jangly "Cold Hearts" and the almost Velocette-sounding "Capital Soul".


The small Peruvian indiepop-label Plastilina records was the label behind one of my favourite releases from last year, The Hi-Life Companion’s “Say Yes!”, and now another goodie is released by this label.

I guess you can call The Soft City an “indiepop supergroup” with former members of bands like Comet Gain, Kicker, Ladybug Transistor, A Boy Named Thor and Crystal Stilts. The band started as the solo project of Phil Sutton (Comet Gain, Kicker), and with the help of some friends, he recorded a 3 track ep for Cloudberry Records in 2007. On the Cloudberry-single, Sutton did the vocals himself, but on the new album, Dora Lubin sings on all songs. The Soft City is no longer a solo-project, but a full band. Dora Lubin’s strong vocals remind me of someone, but I really can’t tell who. It’s someone good, I know that much. The Soft City’s self-titled debut-album is full of lovely pop songs with great melodies and jangly guitars. When I listen to these songs, I get the same feeling as I do when I listen to songs by The Go-Betweens and especially the ones Grant McLennan wrote. They may be upbeat and happy, but there’s always some kind of thoughtful melancholy beneath the happy melodies. I like that a lot.

My favourites on the album are many, but “Falling Star”, with its lovely, lovely chorus and layered guitars is one of the stronger songs here. “Young and dumb” is also especially good. It’s a bouncy pop-song with great organs and a wonderful chorus. It’s one of those songs that’s not easy to get out of your head.


released March 31, 2010

All songs by Philip J. Sutton, except Young & Dumb and Falling Star by Jason Corace.

The Soft City on this record were:

Dora Lubin: Vocals
Kyle Forester: Bass and keyboards
Jason Corace: Guitars
Phil Sutton: Drums

Recorded by Gary Olson at Marlborough Farm Studios, 2009.

Sleeve art: Ian Dingman



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The Soft City New York, New York

The Soft City were a band from New York City: Dora Lubin, Phil Sutton, Jason Corace, with various others: Kyle Forester, Turner Stough, and live, Lisa Goldstein, and Andy Adler. They recorded for Calico Cat, and made an LP and an EP.

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