Music-inspired chic is among my favorite takes on fashion: they are called polka dots, afterall. And who better to carry off a summery new album paired with an offer for pretty pop-art nail decals than zealously fashionable Zooey D?
Volume 3 is the fourth studio album from the darling alt duo She & Him, Portland’s own M. Ward and the enchanting and evocative entertainer Deschanel. Ward has woven a deeply dreamy, retro-feeling gauze over the project as a now seasoned producer, but grounds it as straightforward guitarist. Eleven of the tracks were penned and arranged by magnetic lead vocalist Deschanel, donning her musician hat (I’ll bet she actually has one of those), while three lesser-known throwback rock covers originally performed by pioneering leading ladies of pop like Connie Francis (“Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me”) and Blondie (“Sunday Girl”) feel right at home with Deschanel’s signature throaty register. She also takes on “Baby” by fellow songwriter Ellie Greenwich, who wrote or co-wrote tons of the most timeless toe-tappers including “Be My Baby,” “Da Doo Ron Ron,” “Leader of the Pack,” and “Do Wah Diddy Diddy.”
It’s a sunshiny set of songs that arrived on the scene just in time for summer, and debuted to unexpectedly take over the charts. Their enthusiastic fan base helped She & Him to push aside the heavily-hyped soundtrack to The Great Gatsby film, executive-produced by Jay-Z, and emerge as the number one release of the week on both iTunes and Amazon.
For those who can’t get enough of Deschanel’s popular quirky persona in one of the multiple mediums she already dominates, a cute collaboration with Rad Nails made adorable album art nail decals available free with purchase. “The ’60s-inspired designs take after the band’s Volume 3 album cover,” the Rad Nails site enthuses, “which was released on May 7. The nail set is FREE with any CD/LP/cassette purchase using the coupon code “NAILS” at MergeRecords.com.” High-fidelity cosmetics are definitely a concept I could get used to.
What do you think of She & Him’s newest album? What other acts would you like to see collaborate with beauty brands for their releases? — Casandra Armour