CD SonoSings (CD 4680955),
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  • 1. re: Stacks
    2. Everything in Its Right Place
    3. Gravity - (featuring Evan Geiger/Sara Bareilles/Jeremiah Smith)
    4. I Want You Back
    5. Again and Again
    6. Little Bird
    7. Come Here Boy
    8. Enjoy the Silence
    9. Bittersweet
    10. Oh What a World
    11. Joga
    12. White Winter Hymnal
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 13291

  • Credits
    ProducerChristopher Given Harrison; Hugo Vereker; Gabriel Mann
    EngineerChristopher Given Harrison

    Audio Mixers: Christopher Given Harrison; Hugo Vereker; Gabriel Mann.
    Photographer: Liz Massie.
    The six alumni of a cappella vocal groups at USC and UCLA who make up the three men and three women of Sonos don't sound like they have spent any time listening to or studying the Persuasions, much less the barbershop quartets of a century ago, but they do seem familiar with the "boy bands" of the late '90s and 2000s, such as the Backstreet Boys and *NSYNC, whose arranging ideas they often borrow from as they present moody versions of songs originated by the likes of Radiohead, Depeche Mode, Bjrk, and Rufus Wainwright, among others. Christopher Given Harrison, a group member who also earns credits for arranging, co-producing, engineering, and mixing, may or may not be familiar with Todd Rundgren's 1985 album A Cappella, but he takes a leaf from it by using technology to defeat the point of making music without musical instruments. Rundgren employed synthesizers to create sounds with his voice that aped instruments, and Harrison does the same thing, particularly on Depeche Mode's "Enjoy the Silence," one of several songs boasting a percussion-like track. Otherwise, the group members, plus a batch of their friends, aided by studio trickery, create musical beds out of humming and intoning wordless syllables, supporting the plaintive lead vocals. The use of songs that will be known to many listeners is something of a gimmick, of course. You can't listen to "I Want You Back" without having the Jackson 5's version in mind, and that's the point. Sonos emphasize the comparisons by pointedly providing the names of the songs' originators in the album credits, so that, even if the listener doesn't know them, they can be found readily and downloaded quickly to a cell phone for comparison purposes. Without those comparisons, this is often dreamy, downcast music for an a cappella group. Still, Sonos are to be credited with finding a new style for an old (actually, the oldest) musical form. ~ William Ruhlmann

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