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There isn't a thing remotely original about Fanfarlo — but that's kind of what makes the band so endearing. Led by warble-voiced multi-instrumentalist Simon Balthazar, the group luxuriates in the kind of ebullient, upward-spiraling pop that the Arcade Fire has popularized. But there's a ragged edge to Fanfarlo's fluttering coo and sprawling, horn-rich arrangements — only that edge has been lifted wholesale from one of the Arcade Fire's main influences, Neutral Milk Hotel. Throw in a little Talking Heads-esque cleverness and you've got a surefire recipe for homogenized indie rock. But the group's debut, Reservoir, feels more like celebration than regurgitation — and if Balthazar and crew can pull that off live, Fanfarlo's Larimer show should be a sweet and pleasant evening full of nice people making nice music. You know, if that kind of thing doesn't totally nauseate you.

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Jason Heller
Contact: Jason Heller

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