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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
The Baldwin Brothers
The Return of the Golden Rhodes
TVT Records

Rating: 8.5/10 ?


November 14, 2006
There's an odd, Jackass-minded faux-fascination with 70s detritus among many of today's showbiz kids that extends to pretty much anything they do as they reinterpret the decade as a time of everyone not giving a rat's ass about anything. The same could be said of any other decade past the 20s really, although the discovery of the G spot was, let's face it, a watershed moment in the overhauling of social mores; the message was "Art? Screw it, just make something weird while we tend more carefully to this nu-gynecology thing."

And so, the children raised by parents of that hivemind are now making art, although sex has been cast aside in favor of money-greediness: "Art? Screw it, just shove some microwaved Pavlovian ideas down their throats while we tend more carefully to this stockmarket thing."

The Baldwin Brothers - and other bands of whatever stripe you want to call their genre - do have interesting things to say, whether or not the core ideas required a little grave-digging. Their second album for hipsterista label TVT finds the band settled down some, positioning their turntablism, samples and breakbeats around a 70s curiosity shop reminiscent of Winston Giles in its sang-froid innocence, sort of what you'd get if every decent jingle idea for a 20something-centric TV ad were lined up in a Madison Avenue stock-loopage comp.

By that standard it's often house-DJ-ready, but there are a lot of layers going on, making for a headphone or commute-time experience that's personal and ultimately just plain, you know, nice. This sort of thing - technically progressive but down-to-earth experimentalism designed specifically for humans - is a prototypical example of what'll eventually be thought of as the most salvageable sounds of a musical decade made entirely of spare parts from previous ones and devoid of pop originality; Golden Rhodes does require an honest loosening up on the listener's part, particularly if your list of low-IQ energy-vampire buds is long, because they won't get it.

Plenty of Rhodes worship here (referring to the keyboard most people will recognize from TV's Taxi theme), although its amniotic essence is mostly concentrated at the top of the record; the acid funk of "When My Brother Had a Datsun" and several other pieces escort it to the back of the bus, but it's all good.

Reviewed by Eric Saeger
An LAS staff writer based in New Hampshire, Eric Saeger was named alt.flame\'s Newbie of the Year in 2000.

See other reviews by Eric Saeger

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