Friday, December 09, 2005

Believe the hype

As a journalist, I am usually reflexively suspicious of hype. So when everyone began talking about Clap Your Hands Say Yeah over the summer, I figured it was just another case of Polyphonic Spree or Terence Trent D'Arby, critical darlings that amounted to, well, critical darlings and not much more. And I heard a couple of tracks from them on the radio and I wasn't impressed. But I ran across them on Napster and figured what the Hell, It's free (or almost) and I downloaded the album. And it grew and grew on me. I'm not sure I can describe it - it's got bits of John Lennon, bits of REM, large chunks of Radiohead (which I really don't like, but works here), some Violent Femmes, some Velvet Undergound, a little well placed Kings of Leon, and I-don't-know-what-all. But it's really damned good. I'll warn you - it takes two listenings at least, so if you're one of these give-it-five-seconds-and-move-on-types, don't bother. But this album will reward some patience.

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