The Sinking of the S.S. Danehower is a giant leap forward musically from the Philistines Jr.'s first CD release, The Continuing Struggle of... Whereas the earlier record, although perhaps the Katis brothers' finest effort in terms of universal appeal, consisted of heartfelt, if somewhat unimaginative and lo-fi indie guitar rock, the newer effort is a sonic smorgasbord of swirling keyboards, ambient guitar textures, tinkling xylophone, and primitive electronic drum loops, all beautifully recorded. Like much of the Philistines' work, The Sinking of the S.S. Danehower is a concept album, this time billed as the "original soundtrack" for a non-existent movie. Lyrically and thematically, the album deals in the surreal, weaving vague childhood memories with the story of an ill-fated submarine to create a dream-like mood sometimes reminiscent of the best work of the Spacemen 3. Highlights include the prog/kraut rock-like instrumentals "The Voyage of the S.S. Danehower" and "Last Night, James Kochalka Got Really Drunk and Swears he Saw a U.F.O.," as well as a Lowery organ-fueled cover of "Moon River." Despite the silliness of the song titles, The Sinking of the S.S. Danehower is perhaps the most "serious" and most fully realized Philistines Jr. recording.
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AllMusic Review by Pemberton Roach