The Pine Hollows ‘Something My Heart Understands' (self release)
On some of the tracks from The Pine Hollows' sophomore album “Something My Heart Understands,” NYU musicology student Gianni Napolitano is all eaten up with the worst aspect of '60s British pop — “the cutes.” You know, the kind of dimpled grin, boy-next-door sweetness that made guys like Herman's Hermits and Freddie and the Dreamers so much more endearing to moms than skuzzy-looking troublemakers like the Rolling Stones.
Songs like “All You Gotta Do,” with its ridiculously catchy, upbeat melody and sunny counterpoint harmonies will have you breaking out in that ridiculous toy-soldier dance Freddie Garrity used to do when he sang “I'm Telling You Now” (his only Top 10 hit, which Napolitano's song vaguely resembles) on “American Bandstand.”
But when Napolitano gets serious, he can wield some pretty sharp chops, especially on the darker acoustic-electric ballad “Anyone,” the harmony- and electric-guitar-layered kiss-off rocker “I Can't Make Her Smile” and the irresistibly hooky “Look At Her,” all of which parade the bandleader's Beatles/Buddy Holly influences unabashedly.
— Gene Triplett