At first they seemed like they were from the pop-rap Asher Roth or Sammy Adams school, then their album The Bright Side made them seem like reggae-rap disciples of Sublime, but on their 2014 self-titled release, the Brighton, Massachusetts duo Aer get their self-reflection on. It's put up-front as the opening "Spades, Clubs & Diamonds" decides that keeping caustic people around is like "renewing a book you've already read," plus other bits of flip-flopped and spliffed-out wisdom, because the lazy, hazy, and faux-Cali vibe is still there, making all these laid-back looks at life infectious and cool. "I'm Not Sorry" sings the post-breakup blues with a honeyed, Pink Floyd-ish sway underneath, which isn't that odd a touch point for frat-rap, but the agitated, jarring bits of the song are suitably betrayed, infuriated, and communicate to all generations, even if those feelings are raised by "I know what you've been doing while visiting those colleges." Charming how "Pretty Lady (Around Me)" points out some sorority sister's "out-of-town smile," and when the unhappy drunk called "Ex" realizes it's "too short-sighted to see the morning of guilt," it's the welcome sound of suburban cads turning admirable. Call their effortless way irksome but Aer keep on growing, and if you've never had the experience of a well-adjusted 21 turning into a jaded, doubtful 22, Aer, the album, is that awakening on wax.
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AllMusic Review by David Jeffries