Palberta, the trio of Ani Ivory-Block, Lily Konigsberg, and Nina Ryser, have announced their new album, Palberta5000, for release in January via Wharf Cat. The trio have been putting out records of short, intelligent, lo-fi gems for the last decade, and they’re set to continue that – but with a more pop structure. They say:
“While punk music was our first love, pop music has become our fixation. Throughout the making of Palberta5000, we were focused on making music that people could not only sing along to but get stuck in their heads… that and attempting to make songs longer than 50 seconds…While our melodies have gotten more melodic and our singing less harsh, we haven’t strayed too far from who Palberta is, defiantly Palberta. And no one will shape us to be otherwise.”
We get our first dose of the new Palberta with the lead single from the new album, “Before I Got Here”, which, for starters, is three and a half minutes – much longer than anything on their 2018 record Roach Going Down. They make great use of that time too, starting off with a surging indie-pop attack, where bass wiggles beneath disgruntled musings (“If you want to talk about it / then we can talk about it / I’m just so sick about it”), before angelic backing harmonies flutter into the fray, reminding us of the trio’s knack for packing hooks into tight spaces.
Ahead of the half way point, “Before I Got Here” shifts approach to a more stately and slowed-down sound – although this is still Palberta and it’s still charmingly homespun. Nonetheless, the way they incorporate loping brass into this jam is impressive, and sounds entirely natural as they march through the remaining couple of minutes with haggard glee.