Guided By Voices took a short step back on Sandbox -- Pollard's melodies are sabotaged by the attempt to harness them to a harder guitar sound on songs like "Lips of Steel" and "The Drinking Jim Crow." With the exception of the R.E.M.-like jangle and stomp of "Can't Stop" and the Beatles-inspired harmonies of "Long Distance Man" (one of the prettiest songs in the band's extensive catalog), the songs on Sandbox ultimately fail to register. Sandbox represents a detour in the band's progress which was to be furthered significantly from this point forward.
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AllMusic Review by Brian Egan