Saturn Over Sunset is like Harry Nilsson songs peeled off a Smile bootleg. It’s melody after lovely, glammed-up Tin Pan Alley melody, held at a distance by deliberately dissipated production and the occasional fourth wall–breaking tape machine artifact. Even though it came out this fall, it sounds like stolen studio demos for a lost 1979 L.A. album from a band discovered supporting Sparks for a three-night stint at the Roxy. If that fiction is a little too elaborate, well, elaborate fiction is what Midnight Sister do best. They’re nicely paired here with L.A.’s Cones, brothers with a detailed backstory and unpredictable yet understated pop songs.
Valley band Midnight Sister skip the Sunset Strip and set up somewhere off Ventura Boulevard, responding to that endless sort of suburban sameness with their own dedicated weirdness, and their recent