Say you love good melodies, classic pop harmonies, and ethereal female vocals. And say the modern world has so blunted your attention span that if a song can’t speak to you in three minutes, it’s no good. Hell, let’s go out on a limb and say you have at least one song by She & Him and another by Fleetwood Mac at your disposal this very moment. In short, say you’re one of thousands of artistic, fashionable, technologically enabled, well-meaning young people in the Bay Area. Then you’re bound to like La Sera. You may even love it — but only if you can look past the fact that the songs aren’t that great.
The band is the vehicle of one Katy Goodman, bassist for Brooklyn pop-punk trio Vivian Girls. She’s also played with Gregg Foreman of Delta 72 and Cat Power in dream-pop band All Saints Day. La Sera provides an outlet for Goodman to express her soft side, and that she does. Blending nicely rudimentary bass playing with early-Sixties pop guitar and rock drumming and multi-layered vocal choruses — ever-longing wistfulness cranked to 11 — Goodman delivers nostalgic style in spades. But substance is sorely lacking; might as well rip “Beating Heart” and “Never Come Around” to your phone and save the rest for background music at your next party. (Hardly Art)