Spare Snare

Westfield Lane

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    5
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AllMusic Review by

Recorded to a four-track in a home studio (read: bedroom) and featuring quirky lyrics about kitschy collectibles, girls, heartbreak, and drugs, all set to simple, noisy pop music, Westfield Lane wouldn't be original in any year. So what? Its rough-hewn simplicity is charming more often than not. Spare Snare is one Scotsman -- Jan D. Burnett -- on two-string guitar, synthesizer, stylophone, bass, snare, drum-machine programming, and effects pedals. Burnett also handles all vocals and lyrics, and he has a good, clean pop-ready voice with a plaintive warmth that fits neatly with both the more comic and the more heartfelt tracks. There is some filler here ("Before Barcodes" and "Disturbed" come to mind), and some ideas simply don't work well ("Hit Man, Cha Cha Cha"'s looped background sample is maddening). But no matter what your age, songs like "Action Hero" and "Last Night" are perfect examples of why this CD is ideal for a wee touch of the adolescent blues.