As if we need another cute all girl group writing songs about magic and fairies and forests and hating mathematics in the world, right? Having seen this trio at a Ruby clothing launch for young illustrators (the brand commandeered the band for a tour of sorts through it’s store openings nationwide) these feelings of anti-twee righteousness were entirely quashed. Expertly crafted, elegantly executed and with hardly a cringe moment in sight, Teacups are the band from this genre, in New Zealand anyway, that deserve all our attention and none of our genre bashing.
And the album is no different. A tri-fold paper cover gives way to the girls ensconced in bubbles surrounded by twilight hazes and effortlessly places their honest and hardworking aesthetic amongst the subject matter they so ardently profess. Forest Fiction opens with ‘Magic’, a stand-out track that the aforementioned hating-of-maths-in-favour of magic is all about. Beautiful double bass weaves its way through the vocals of shy, total girly girl front woman Chealstea (or so their album liner notes would have you believe) as the country guitar lines and tambourine appropriately hold down lines like “maths should be abolished / that old, analysis science is done for” as the chorus employs all the handclaps and clicks (I think there should be cowbells here too) necessary for the ‘ooohs and ahhh’s to filter through. Forest Fiction continues much as it left off and this is perhaps one of its only faults (if we’re judging it on a nailing an aesthetic absolutely scale, which I am) – it’s a tad monotonous in places, which could perhaps lead one back to the “I’ve had enough with the aesthetic” conversation, if they hadn’t, as this review suggests, nailed the aesthetic so absolutely. Other highlights? Vocal harmonies with alternate lyrics that collide in a spoken-word subconscious swirl not unlike the recent efforts of The xx, and a track on the latter part of the album called ‘Four Eyed Birdwatcher’ who’s subject matter, I am led to believe has something to do with actual bird-watching, love, and stalking people. Cute!