Apology, worry, and indecision abound in Oatmeal Queen’s music


Oatmeal Queen

Martian, Independent, oatmealqueen.bandcamp.com

On the surface, this suite of seven tracks from Vancouver’s Paloma Pendharkar couldn’t be more like a Julie Doiron album — apology, worry and indecision abound in these spare, synthy compositions, but they but eventually yield to Pendharkar’s recognition of personal strength. But while classic Doiron albums are intensely insular, always inward; Pendharkar looks outward, and yearns for belonging. Ultimately she confronts an inability to connect with or hold on to others. Martian is rightly advertised as “celestial synths,” depressive jingles that echo early Stars and Hot Chip. There are no complaints to lodge against this debut; it makes its point and sounds good doing it.