Norwegian Sondre Lerche follows up his acclaimed debut, Faces Down, with an equally disarming songwriting success. Still sounding retro in that Bacharach/Beatles/Beach Boys way, Lerche works on his lyrics this time and strips down the production. This familiar sound could easily get old, but Two Way Monologue‘s melodies have a completely engaging swell and swing to them. With Lerche on guitar (and enlisting the same producers and backing band), the arrangements are rife with cute pop flourishes from horns, piano and organs. And Lerche’s dynamic and youthfully optimistic voice deserves a listen, even from those who have yet to embrace the joys of classic pop.