News From Park Avenue (Music, that is)

Back in 2004, Park Avenue Music released For Your Home or Office, a very charming little EP of dreamy electronic pop. As I wrote in my review, one of the things that I really liked about Park Avenue Music’s, um, music, was their subtle approach, that they weren’t afraid to take the time to let their songs stretch out and breath.

I still remember the first time I listened to “Cutter,” the disc’s opening track. It was a rather dreary December evening, and I was getting into my car after work. As I waited for the car to warm up, the track’s soft, fluttering tones slowly began to drift over the speakers, along with Jeannette Faith’s whispery vocals. Suddenly, my drive home became something altogether more otherworldly, as if I’d somehow slipped into the sort of surreal, dreamspaces one finds in films such as Last Life in the Universe (indeed, Park Avenue Music sounds have more than a passing similarity to that film’s subdued electronica soundtrack).

As a result, Park Avenue Music has become one of those bands that I just file away in my mind, which means that suddenly, I’ll just drop everything and randomly Google the band’s name just to see if there’s anything new coming from their camp. Which happened today.

Sadly, there seems to be no definitive news of a new album or EP on the horizon. But if you drop by the band’s MySpace page, you’ll find several unreleased tracks/preliminary mixes/etc. And though they might be works in progress, songs like “Piet” and “Tufts” seem to point towards a slightly darker direction. The fluttering synths and light glitchiness are still present, but the group has also incorporated somber, torchsong piano melodies — whose clear tones provide an interesting counterpoint to the electronic elements and disembodied voices swirling around them.

On a related note, here’s an interview Somewhere Cold did with the band shortly after the release of For Your Home or Office.