Album Mini-review: Keep Shelly in Athens – Now I’m Ready


File Next to: Cocteau Twins, Beach House

With their gauzy, heavily-reverbed ambience, this Greek chillwave duo sounds a bit like synthy Britpop a la Cocteau Twins, crossed with a less-mannered Beach House. Clearly they’d prefer that listeners focus on the music rather than the personalities; shrouded in mystery, they reveal little about themselves beyond their names (RΠЯ and new vocalist Myrtha). The dreamy arrangements are strengthened by a solid, propulsive beat, and Myrtha’s English-language vocals ride confidently atop the music. After a series of EPs, a compilation drawing from the best among those, and a 2013 album (At Home) that showed them searching for a sound, Keep Shelly in Athens come up with a winning approach on the appropriately-titled Now I’m Ready. Equal parts retro and modern, KSIA draws from the past (parts of the title track evoke warm memories of The Dream Academy) and looks confidently toward the future.