The Very Most: Congratulations Forever 

Speaking in Northwestern indie terms, Boise band The Very Most combines acoustic folk with electronica and rock 'n' roll sensibilities. The record as a whole has an uplifting and upbeat energy. Most songs are in a major key and tend to bounce around like a carefree child in an inflatable carnival jumping house. Individually, the songs are all wonderfully arranged as if to suggest a lot of thought and intention went into every chord change.

I've seen The Very Most in concert. At the time, it was just two guys playing acoustic guitars and singing. Hearing the album, however, it seems like the live show has nothing to do with their recordings. Congratulations Forever bursts with sound. Most songs are a myriad of instruments. In fact, my only condemnation of Congratulations Forever would be to say that The Very Most seems to have, at times, dog-piled sounds and instruments on top of each other with little regard for restraint.

In many ways, Congratulations Forever sounds like Boise. A lot of Built to Spill seeps through the cracks into their sound and the credits include a long list of local musicians, including Kris Doty, who sings beautifully on at least two tracks.

Overall, The Very Most is a band Boise can be proud of. Every tune on Congratulations Forever contains a pretty, catchy melody and some clever, endearing lyrics. And these fellas clearly have a working knowledge of the technical side of music, as is especially evident in the string arrangement on "Love at Home." So check them out. At the very least, you'll be impressed, at the very most, you'll find a new favorite band.

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