After the first minute: Oh, some New Order B-sides. After two minutes: Oh, they let Belle and Sebastian hang out once. Four songs in: Uh, how did this just turn into a hipster disco thing without getting sucky? Eight songs in: What the ever-lovin' ... Plastic Noise Experience? One song later: Okay, is this the Whites pulling a Residents? And so on, but what's going on is pure jihad. Ex-Hüsker Dü chief Bob Mould is all grown-up and eager to hose newbie reviewers into flogging their thesauri and obscure-o-rama hayseed-indie mix-burns for all they're worth in a desperate lunge to categorize the contents herein — to wit: subtle switches in texture that bespeak genius, alt-rock hooks you could hang an elephant from, and trumpet lines faked with vocalized ba-ba-baaas. What a record this is, friends. Never mind the illegible comparative anatomy here; give it a test drive. Why slum at the Strokes' Motel 6 when you can crash at the Hilton?

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Eric W. Saeger