If you like all or some of the following artists you might like The Ruby Suns' Sea Lion: Caribou, Brian Wilson, Animal Collective, Panda Bear, Ariel Pink, The Go! Team, Avalanches, Deserter's Songs-era Mercury Rev, Yeasayer, El Guincho, Flaming Lips or Grizzly Bear. Made by a Californian (Ryan McPhun) relocated to New Zealand, The Ruby Suns marry sunny psych pop with world music influences and cut and paste mish-mashery.
Sea Lion is a heady brew that is by turns winsome and exotic in the mold of the Avalanches - all tropicalia, mariachi and tribal rhythms - and trippily volatile like Animal Collective. Both sonically intense and infectiously poppy, it's brimming over with field recordings and sun-drenched harmonies. Rather than seeming opportunistic, the pan-global found sound - often ear-boggling in its detail - is more than just special effects, but enhances an imaginative approach to songwriting. 'Kenya Dig It?' and 'Morning Sun', for instance, share the song-within-a-song dynamics of Soft Bulletin-era Flaming Lips and Grizzly Bear, adding a colourful splash of shoegaze for good measure. Recommended.
I really enjoyed this album, it was recommended to me by a friend and I found it improved with every listen, every time you do listen through the album (and it is one of those that you need to listen to in one piece to get the most out of it)you hear new things. The immediate influences I heard were The Flaming Lips and Brian Wilson. I have read reviews where they have been compared to Vampire weekend and labelled "afro-beat" but that is more just a nod to the different instruments used, this is classic pop songwriting.