I'm a huge Pernice Brothers fan, and although I got diminishing returns from their last two albums, their first two, 1998's Overcome by Happiness and 2001's The World Won't End, are two of my all-time favorites. So it was equal parts excitement and trepidation I felt when I got word that they made the song "Somerville" from the forthcoming album Live a Little (due out "in the fall of 2006") available for download in both audio and video formats.
The verdict, after about four listens: a very fine song, better than anything on last year's Discover a Lovelier You. One trend from that album, and which continues on this track, is that Joe Pernice's vocal style has changed from the breathier Colin Blunstone-like sound of the first two albums to a bit more immediate and unadorned sound, and the vocals are also more upfront in the mix. Meanwhile, the guitar hook in this track sounds like a slightly slower version of the one in "Working Girls (Sunlight Shines)" from The World Won't End. Here's hoping this track is representative of the rest of the new disc.
"Enough blabbing", you're thinking by now; "where can I download it?" Directly from their site. They ask for your email address to put you on their mailing list, but their mailings are fairly infrequent, and usually amusingly written as well as informative (in fact, it was from such an email that I found out about "Somerville"). The video is a goof, 3:50 of Joe riding a bike (shot from the neck down) while balanced atop what look like metal tubes.