BY TIM HINELY
Wow, I’ve been hearing rumblings of a new Rocketship record for like, well, years but nothing has ever materialized until now. Yes, this is the same Rocketship led by Dusty Reske that released some classic indie pop records back in the 90’s (that record on Slumberland, A Certain Smile, A Certain Sadness is an all-time fave). He later took some forays into ambient/electronic stuff that I didn’t like as much but Rocketship is back and this record sounds excellent. The thing is here that Reske, working with dreamy vocalist Ellen Osborn, didn’t try and recapture that 90’s sound of the band. I mean, there’s still elements of that sound all over the record but on Thanks To You Reske is definitely following his own musical mind and it shows.
At times you might think it’s a lost, baroque 60’s record that Curt Boettcher or The Left Banke did with some real weird organs/keyboard sounds. Kept in Reske’s talented hands he reigned in the songwriting (he basically kept the songs from floating off to never never land) and really made a unique record. First cut ‘Under Streetlights Shadows” is a perfect distillation of all that Reske has done (bits of space pop, shoe gaze, etc.) while the soaring “I Just Can’t Get Enough of You” might be there best song on here in all its otherworldly glory. “Outer Otherness” might be as close as he’s gonna get to straight synthpop (and it’s a blast when Osborn’s vocals come popping in) and “What’s the Use of Books” reminded me a bit of old NYC French pop band Ivy (again, another killer vocal performance by Osborn) and don’t miss the impossibly lovely “City Fair.”
For Reske to make another classic record, 20 years after the fact, isn’t just surprising, it’s downright thrilling! Again, he wasn’t trying recreate his past, but just doing what he does best and on Thanks To You he really put his best foot forward (again).
TRACKS TO TRACK DOWN: “I Just Can’t Get Enough of You,” “Outer Otherness,” “City Fair”