Superimposers

Missing

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First off, it must be said that Missing, technically, is not the second Superimposers album, and the duo themselves, singers and multi-instrumentalists Miles Copeland and Dan Warden, disavow its release in no uncertain terms. After falling out with Little League Records, the label which had gathered the Superimposers' early singles for their self-titled full-length in 2005, the duo began working on their real debut album (eventually released as Harpsichord Treacle on the Wonderfulsound label in early 2008) without their former label. In a case of Not Cool rarely seen since Fleetwood Mac's manager put a fake version of the band on tour in America in the U.S. circa 1974, Little League retaliated by releasing the remarkably weak Missing, a collection of early demos and unfinished tracks released without the band's consent. (To add to the general sense of tackiness, early press for the record claimed that the duo had disappeared without a trace just prior to the album's release, as if they were taking part in some sort of publicity stunt.) In fact, in a letter posted to their website, Myspace page, and various other online portals, Warden and Copeland wrote emphatically, "An album entitled Missing is scheduled for release by Little League Productions in the name of the Superimposers on 8 May 2006. The Superimposers have not given their consent to the release of this album in their name, nor to its title, and wish to disassociate themselves from it. The album contains unfinished tracks never intended for release as well as vocals, instrumentation and songwriting by other musicians. The Superimposers wish to make clear that Missing is not representative of their current work or taste. The Superimposers are in a legal dispute with Little League Productions and are not 'missing'." Indeed, Missing has little of the retro charm of the songs on the debut collection: even overtly '60s-like tunes like the deliciously twee "S'posin'," with its wordless ba-ba-ba harmonies, are remixed in a clumsy, ham-fisted manner (credited to a third-string U.K. dance producer named Boston Rodriguez) that has little of the wit and playfulness of the debut. Somewhat frustrating because there are some potentially very good songs buried underneath the inappropriate production, Missing is finally done in with songs like "Leave It All Behind," which features completely inappropriate R&B vocals and lyrics by someone named Dicke and doesn't even belong on a Superimposers record. Of interest primarily to die-hard Superimposers fans and those with an academic interest in bad record company behavior, Missing can't be generally recommended.

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