The Fontaines, a brother-sister duo hailing from Los Angeles, have crafted a sound that’s part twee, punk and, most importantly, fun on their new EP “II.”
Charlotte Fontaine, the band’s frontwoman, sounds jovial as a cat with a ball of yarn on the song, “I Love You.” The track has a bouncy beat and a distorted guitar riff, that when paired with Charlotte’s vocals, almost sounds like metal-heads having a day of croquet.
Charlotte’s brother, Hank Fontaine, pulls the tracks together with his guitar licks, but “Please Say Something” shows that he can pluck along with his sister’s sweet tone when he’s not using distortion to get his point across. The song is a more intimate tune than the other three tracks on the EP, featuring only Hank’s strings and Charlotte’s pipes. It’s a nice cooing ending to the EP, which is otherwise full of energy and upbeat songs.
The lead tracks, “Cold” and “Handstand” are the epitome of the duo’s self-described sound of “New-Wop.” “Cold” has fast beats and Charlotte crooning over rollicking guitars with distortion and spunk. “Handstand” has the pacing of a song from the doo-wop era, but everything feels ratcheted toward a 2016 sound.
Overall the EP is a sweet and fun romp with the past and present. Listeners shouldn’t have any problem getting their dancing shoes, poodle skirts and mohawks together for this EP.