We reviewed this album during Bargain
Basement several weeks ago and I think this may be the first time
an album has jumped from that forum into the regular reviews, particularly
an album by an unsigned band (which bolsters an interesting argument
about the role labels actually play today).
This band is a wonderful pop band with great hooks and balanced pieces.
While a heavy dose of crude synthesizer and Moog sounds are featured
in every song, the traditional bass, drums and guitar make up the
backbone of each one. Think of the synthesized portions as very heavy
frosting on a birthday cake. You'll hear snippets of Weezer,
Devo, Split Enz, etc. without ever being able to hear
anything that was borrowed and abused. That's the trick to having
a great sound - people can recognize the influence without being able
to identify one artist singularly (with the notable exception of Oasis
and The Beatles).
The other great thing about this band is clapping - nearly every
great track on this record incorporates clapping. Does that sound
silly? It shouldn't. That's what pop is.
So, to this reviewer a solid album has at least 3 tracks that require
multiple listening sessions. A great album reveals itself slowly -
it has a couple of gateway tracks with hooks that bring a listener
in and then the rest of the album is played as an afterthought. Eventually,
the tracks the listener doesn't listen to as much are the gateway
tracks. Every Frank Black album has this quality. "All
the Weird Kids Know" should be on the radio right now. It's also
the track this reviewer listens to the least right now but it's the
one everybody should listen to first. "Algometric Touch"
is also an instant hit with sing-along qualities and clever lyrics.
"Invaders" has got all of the upbeat touches of a great
80's dance song. But while those three are great, it's the chorus
from "Science of Love" that you'll find yourself singing
over and over in the shower (We are mag-nets).
Overall, one of the best albums this reviewer has heard in a while.
-William "Cadillac" Donovan
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