Quick Review (LP): Gimme Some by Peter Bjorn and John

Peter, Bjorn, and John
Gimme Some
Startime; 2011

My Rating: C+ (60/100)

Best Tracks: "Dig A Little Deeper", "May Seem Macabre", "Down Like Me", "I Know You Don’t Love Me"

A little too ready for prime-time.

NOTES

    • I dug "Young Folks", so I thought I’d check this one out.
    • Kind of a fun power pop album. I think I like it.
    • So that’s how you say "Macabre?"
    • Me likey the guitar on "May Seem Macabre"
    • This is an upfront pop record with big vocals.
    • I think I’ve heard "Second Chance" on TV or something. It’s a decent tune…
    • On second listen, not quite as crazy about it. It strikes a little shallow, as something less than grand.
    • "Black Book" was a turn-off track for me.
    • Nice classic rock riff on "Down Like Me"
    • These guys sort of feel like a Swedish Sebadoh to me. Maybe a little Cars in there too.
    • The last track is pretty sweet. I’ll bet they are pretty strong live.
    • All in all, I feel a little too much like I’m going to hear a selection from this on the hippest new ABC young adult drama. Only I don’t really watch those kinds of shows, so I don’t really know what the heck I’m saying…

ATTRIBUTES
Cohesion (4/5)
Concept (3.5/5)
Consistency (4/5)
Consequence (3.5/5)
Songs (4/5)

Quick Review (LP): Astro Coast by Surfer Blood

surfer blood astro coast Surfer Blood
Astro Coast
Kanine; 2010

My Rating: C

Best Tracks: “Swim”, “Slow Jabroni”

It’s simultaneously a strange and a given thing that these guys are indie darlings. On one hand, they sound like a less-interesting-than-Weezer retread of The Cars. On the other hand, a vibe reminiscent of the dorm room goofball pop of The Dismemberment Plan is evident. Overall, it’s decent, but I can’t really see what would set it apart from any other indie band I’m likely to see on any given night in any given club. Even Pitchfork seems to think the lead single “Swim” is likely to remind you of a “Buzz Bin one-off”, and that’s on the way to calling it “Best New Music.” I don’t think so. This smells too much of mediocrity. The hooks don’t pierce and the melody is high but monotonous. I suspect these guys were riding the overly reverb’d wave of indie beach pop, but after a mighty flood, that tide’s going out.

Pitchfork review
Metacritic review