The Ominous Seapods

Jet Smooth Ride

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For their final studio outing with founding guitarist and vocalist Max Verna, Albany's the Ominous Seapods set up shop at God Street Wine's home studio is Ossining, NY, with God Street guitarist and principal songwriter Lo Faber at the mixing board. The result is a direct, well-mixed album of accessible songs with minimal extraneous production and playing. The tunes themselves are a mixed bag. Guitarist/vocalist Dana Montieth's songs, in particular, hover in a post-Talking Heads white-boy funk groove, which -- if hit right on -- can be joyous. When they slip into generic anthemia, as they do in places (such as on "Sad, Sad Corner" and the title track), it is a little harder to take them seriously. The same could be said for Verna's compositions, though his songwriting tends toward a more nuanced delivery. Verna's voice is one of the most evocative in the genre and he shines particularly on quieter tunes like "Theme for Another Enlightened Rogue" and "Millworker's Lament," even though his lyrics occasionally border on cliché. It is forgivable, though, because the music (and album as a whole) has a wonderful innocence throughout.

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