La Sera, ‘Hour of the Dawn’ (Hardly Art)
Having written, sung and played bass on six LPs since 2008, Katy Goodman — formerly of Brooklyn’s Vivian Girls, now fronting Los Angeles’ La Sera — is, at 29, an established indie pop force.
She touts her new album with La Sera, “Hour of the Dawn,” as “Lesley Gore meets Black Flag” — which checks out. Its sugary hooks borrow from oldies, while guitarist Todd Wisenbaker’s jagged solos emulate Black Flag’s Greg Ginn.
It’s a recipe not unlike that of Goodman’s old band’s — but where they spun early-twenties yarns of crushes, parties and wanderlust, opener “Losing to the Dark” finds her driving a stoned, drunk lover home, lamenting how one “can’t live like this forever.”
And where Vivian Girls’ kinetic energy carried harmonies that were occasionally dissonant, tempos too fast, recordings ramshackle, La Sera — Italian for “the evening” — is clean and confident, only really aggressive in its eagerness to please.
Before, Goodman delivering a line like “we are much too wild to control” might’ve come off confrontational.
On “Control,” it’s, well, controlled — summarizing an album falling somewhere between punk origins and pop aspirations, youth and adulthood, sera e notte.
Other new releases
The Black Keys, “Turn Blue” (Nonesuch)
Coldplay, “Ghost Stories” (Parlophone/Atlantic)
Michael Jackson,“Xscape” (Epic)