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The cover of Hard Times for Dreamers, the first full-length release from See Venus, is a collage of blue-hued buildings stacked on top of one another, stretching across a twinkling cityscape. And the music mirrors that simple cinematic elegance with a soundtrack of kaleidoscope pop. "I'll Bet You Know" has a toe-tapping bossanova swing to it; "Boy Bubble Blue" is so airy it threatens to float away before being snatched back down to Earth by singer Rocky Ordoñez's velvety vocals and guitarist Chris Moll's vibrating strum. And the melody of the first track, "Trust," enters into Fleetwood Mac territory, sans Lindsay Buckingham. But this is not a bad thing. March Records has a penchant for releasing cutesy, sweater-weather bands, but See Venus has risen a step above, creating an album perfect for the city or the country, heartbreak or elation, good times or hard times, and songs that settle quietly as dusk sets in.


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