Ivan and Alyosha
All the Times We Had
Imagine Brandon Flowers striking an Everly Brothers pose. It’s not a stretch — the Killers frontman is used to slipping into one musical emulation or another from album to album, and chances are it’s only a coincidence he hasn’t gone through an Everly Brothers phase quite yet. Think of his vocal quality matched with some country-tinged four-piece rock pop, accompanied by continuous harmonies. Fun, gentle pop songs dressed up in western shirts.
There, you have Ivan and Alyosha in brief, or at least my first impression. Not to say that subsequent listens have revealed any great depth past that. If you caught the reference in their name to Dostoevsky characters and thought they might be debating great philosophical quandaries, you’re mistaken. It’s pop music. It would be the strictest parent who would forbid their kids from listening to the pure-as-snow desires in opener “Be Your Man”. Similarly, imagining them in the trouble they describe in “Don’t Wanna Die Anymore” is tough. “Trouble” isn’t what I hear in Ivan and Alyosha; mostly, the words that come to mind are “nice” and “safe”.