Written By: Darwin Green
This is a great album to play in the back of your mind while going out on a bad date to dampen some of the uncomfortable anxiety. The songs range from mood to mood, but they’re all so oddball and delicate that it’s hard to decide whether to tap your foot or just sympathize with each one.
“You Weren’t Exactly A Saint” sounds like Sufjan Stevens if someone pushed Elvis Costello and they bumped into each other. Some of the songs get so enthusiastic that it seems like Bruce Bringsteen pops his head in on occasion.
Midway through the album I can’t tell exactly what genre to place this album in. I feel like I’m putting my ear into a sonic kaleidoscope, where musical genres and ideas swirl and change around each other and no clear picture comes through. But the picture is intriguing and beautiful, nonetheless. It’s not a pastiche, though, like Beck. It’s more subtle, and more based in pop structure than any experimental album. “Torturer,” the song most touted on Myspace and other areas of the internet, sounds like what would happen if the Cure ever collided with Cake and fused temporarily into a quirky, tongue-in-cheek version of Of Montreal’s “She’s a Rejector.”
Imagine rising in a hot air balloon after going through a terrible break-up, and you might understand the Weezeresque “I I I I Me Me Me Me.” It’s a sad, heart-wrenching melody, and the lyrics to the verses deal with no less a sad subject than heartbreak and loss, but when the chorus comes up again, chanting the name of the song, it’s hard not to smile a little bit as though hearing a really good Flight of the Conchords song. The funniest part about it, though, is that it completely works without any corniness.