CD-R, More Mars Team, 2008
Now and then, one is lucky enough to encounter music that defies classification, especially in this modern age of hybridization and cross-pollinated genre-hopping. Tracy Lee Summers, though, manages to transcend this and defies any attempt at labeling her work. It’s a little pop, a little rock and a lot trippy, with elements of jazz, ambient and trip-hop all making brief appearances in what is a short, yet thoroughly original selection of music on “My Favourite Color”.
It’s also entirely not what I would usually choose to listen to. The whole album is imbued with a powerful aura of whimsy and vague optimism. In fact, it’s entirely too positive and lighthearted for my normal tastes, but that doesn’t prevent it from being really, really good – or from me actually enjoying the experience. While only coming in at 28 minutes total playing time, “My Favourite Color” can quite easily play through three or four times before you even think to switch discs. It really is that inoffensive. But therein lies its fundamental flaw, too: even after playing the album non-stop for two hours or so, I find myself hard-pressed to remember anything about the music except for the naïve, child-like mood it has saturated the atmosphere with. Even after repeated attempts, the result is the same: “My Favourite Color” is beautiful, accessible and intelligently constructed music, utilizing an impressive array of instruments to generate enveloping moods, that fades to little more than hints of drones in the memory almost immediately after. There’s also a suggestion of a nearly-catchy melotron melody somewhere in there, but its exact location escapes me.
So, if you’re looking for the ultimate in gentle, happy background music that’s guaranteed not to offend even the most sensitive (or desensitised) ears, then the marvelously vanilla, technically brilliant Tracy Lee Summers is your girl, and “My Favourite Color” belongs on your birthday list.
— David vander Merwe