Retrospective 5: The Poconos - 'The Days Are Getting Shorter'

The Poconos - The Days Are Getting Shorter
(Jigsaw 1999)

"Simplicity, charm and beauty."

 This wonderfully quaint little 7-inch EP, astounding in its simplicity, charm and beauty, was Seattle duo The Poconos' first and only release. Coming out in 1999, some copies of this magical record are still available on the Jigsaw records website and are available for the low, low price of a dollar! In just under 6 songs, The Days Are Getting Shorter covers all the twee-pop bases from the raucous yet controlled punk energy of Tiger Trap on the catchy and crunchy "Booksmart" to the ultra minimalist sound of Beat Happening. ("Ten Hour Drive")

 Each half of The Poconos has a charming vocal delivery; Tami Heaton's charming and youthful, while Mike Applestein's is monotone and slightly nasally. Equally charming are the simple, straightforward and sometimes intentionally lyrics. Take this example from "Valentine's Day". "I think I've told you once or twice, perhaps./But I think you're really nice./I think I saw you smile last week, you know/you should really do that more." Even if Heaton didn't sound like a child, the track perfectly exemplifies the awkward innocence of being a pre-teen. The music also fits the song title; it's like seeing your breath in February. Although visible, it's barely there and gone before you know it. The warm reverb feels like getting home from school, melted snow dripping from your mittens.

 Anyone who's ever listened to the Vivian Girls, bought a K Records cassette or loved 90s music in general will devour this tiny musical morsel. Listen to The Days Are Getting Shorter below. Buy it for $1 here.