A twenty-song concept album about one soldier's mind-shift from patriotic devotion to disillusionment, New Roman Times would be an ambitious undertaking for any band, let alone one that hasn't recorded together since the late Eighties. Mirroring America's new imperialism, Camper Van Beethoven offers a rambling song cycle revolving around fascists, drugs, gunrunners, and insurgency. While the Campers were always an eccentric bunch -- the group is best known for the indie anthem "Take The Skinheads Bowling" and a dubious remake of Fleetwood Mac's Tusk -- this edgy, eclectic mix of angst, Americana, and world music influences is a haunting and compelling comeback.
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