Thursday, August 24, 2006

The Brilliant Dolly's Pillbox Of Taiwan

While I was in Taipei for the Formoz festival, I bought a bunch of CDs of local musicians. I mostly chose the disks by their covers, figuring that musicians with good taste in CD covers must also have good taste in music. Although I haven’t gone through all the CDs yet, that reasoning of mine turned out to be true for one of the disks I bought—how are you today? by a quartet called Dolly’s Pillbox.

Actually, Dolly’s Pillbox’s music betrayed my expectations: the cover is a bright, pastel-colored illustration of a big white rabbit shedding blue droplets of tears, making me think this is a group that plays cute, toyshop pop, maybe like Japan’s Hazel Nuts Chocolate. But in reality, the only possibly ‘cute’ part of this 5-song mini-album is vocalist Cathy’s girlish singing voice, and even that often has a subtly weary quality—the rest of their music is solid indie rock/shoegazer, with streams of super-catchy melodies, sudden waterfalls of surprise chord changes and gurgling rapids of guitar solos. They’re like Galaxie 500, the Taiwanese Girl Band edition. (Dolly’s Pillbox are three girls and one guy.) All five songs on the album are top-rate, and you can listen to most on their MySpace page.

By coincidence after buying their CD I met their singer Cathy, because she was part of the advantage Lucy entourage guiding the band around Taipei during the music festival. I hadn’t listened to the CD yet so I had no idea that this down-to-earth girl was a brilliant creator of music (she also writes all the lyrics and drew the rabbit illustrations for the album—she seems to be a rabbit fanatic). Now I wish I could have seen Cathy’s band at Formoz, and I also wish I could be at eight places at once so I could be at Dolly’s Pillbox’s next show in Taipei while carrying on with everything else in my life.

No comments: