Indie rockers with a sound that pays homage to classic power pop and New Wave, the Canadian band the New Pornographers made a major impact with their 2000 debut album, MASS ROMANTIC. Something of an indie supergroup, the band includes members of Zumpano as well as alt-country songstress Neko Case. Despite leader A.C. Newman releasing a critically acclaimed solo album and Case maintaining only a guest-star status, the band remained intact and fulfilled the promise of its debut with subsequent records and tours.
This is the second album from Vancouver's supergroup, featuring Carl Newman (Zumpano), Neko Case, Dan Bejar (Destroyer), & other local luminaries in a joyful cascade of slightly jaundiced power pop songs that'll knock your socks off. The hooks are huge & the wit & songwriting are off the map. 'Forty staggeringly catchy minutes of four-part harmonies & Wall of Sound production, exploding with energy & joy' - Rolling Stone. Matador. 2003.
The New Pornographers' debut album was the stuff of legend, a near-perfect collection of catchy songs filled with lush sonics, anthemic sing-alongs, and retro pop hooks. Seemingly out of nowhere, the band--featuring Zumpano's Carl Newman, Destroyer's Dan Bejar, and alt-country goddess Neko Case--forged a power pop masterpiece. Electric Version is, thankfully, not all that different. For its 45 minutes, the album never eases up on its great influences; you're treated to a baker's dozen of memorable tunes that harken to prog-rock, New Wave, and the British Invasion. The lyrics are goofy, the production fills your stereo (like the best, most upbeat tracks by Wilco or the Flaming Lips), and the alternating vocalists keep things fresh. The songs only get better as the album progresses; "Chump Change," "Ballad of a Comeback Kid,"and "July Jones" are three that standout. Somehow this indie supergroup is making classic rock ... today. --Jason Verlinde
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