She & Him, "Volume 3" (Merge Records)
Is there any limit to Zooey Deschanel's creativity?
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With her comical hit show, "New Girl," it's hard to work out when she would have the time to write music. And the new album "Volume 3" from her duo, She & Him, with singer-songwriter M. Ward, definitely doesn't sound like an album that's been made on the side.
Their third record bursts to life with the bluesy "I've Got Your Number, Son," and Deschanel's tone is dulcet. It's the kind of song you imagine being played on the jukebox in a 1950s diner.
The lyrics throughout the album are dreamy and full of unrequited love, but sung in an almost theatrical way. In "Never Wanted Your Love," Deschanel adopts a Texan drawl. The addition of Ward's voice on "Baby" creates a beautiful harmony with Deschanel's tone, and an electric guitar riff adds a rock 'n' roll spin to the record.
The album's only weak moment is the cover of Blondie's "Sunday Girl," which comes off flat. Otherwise, She & Him has a winner.