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Kissing Book

Kissing Book is a twee-pop ensemble from Portland which plays strumming, shuffling, bouncing mid-fi music in the time-honored manner of twee-pop bands from the Pacific Northwest dating back to Beat Happening. The action centers on the plaintive vocal meanderings of Andrew Kaffer, while a subdued assortment of instruments, ranging from the expected guitars and keyboards to less expected clarinet and sax, fills out the group's short restrained tunes.

Kissing Book's first album, Lines & Color (1999) was paradigmatic bedroom pop, featuring the chiming guitar and breathy backing vocals of The Softies' Jen Sbragia. The band's follow-up, (s) (2001), amounted to something close to an aesthetic sea change, retaining the group's sensitive vocals and sugary guitar lines, but bringing an odd lounge-jazz sound and increasingly diverse instrumentation to their indie pop foundation, resulting in something considerably more quirky and intriguing.

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