Acclaimed faves at home in Newfoundland and Labrador, East Coast sextet Hey Rosetta mean well. At heart, their songs are modest, unabashedly emotional pop, kinda like if Coldplay stripped down and re-recorded tunes with rootsier arrangements the day after a hooch bender.
But singer/songwriter Tim Baker and his pals are afflicted with the musical equivalent of eyes-bigger-than-stomachitis. This condensed, remastered version of their Plan Your Escape indie LP opens pleasantly enough with guitar-based alt-rocker Another Pilot, then - as if the band members don't trust the song to stand alone - meanders into sporadic bursts of sappy strings like a Broken Social Scene-Travis mashup. When the spiky Lions For Scottie should be coming to an end, it swerves into an unnecessary three-minute piano-and-strings coda.
Elaborate arrangements - even these- aren't bad on their own, but in Hey Rosetta!'s case, their accoutrements overwhelm the underlying songs.
Hey Rosetta! hit the Horseshoe Tuesday (September 4).