Volcano Suns followed their best album, The Bright Orange Years, with a set that is decidedly less melodic and more rambunctious -- less sing-along hyper-folk and more, well, noisy (but still fun). The slight change could be attributed to the increased participation of Jon Williams and Jeff Weigand in the songwriting; half the album features full involvement of the whole trio, while Peter Prescott is the lone writer on only four songs. (Prescott seems to make up for this reduction with a much greater frequency of whooping and bellowing -- no problem there.) The noisier abandon is immediately apparent from Jon Williams' nasty abrasion at the beginning of "White Elephant," undeniably sounding much like some of Roger Miller's more memorable antics in Mission of Burma. And with that song, as with The Bright Orange Years' "Jak," the band once again sticks their catchiest (and funniest) song at the very beginning, as if to grab the listener by the throat, and the grip here never really slackens. Aside from the near-ballad "Room with a View" and the schizo tempo shifts in "Blown Stack," the first side -- also highlighted by the charmingly sloppy neo-rockabilly of "Cans" and the hurtling "Walk Around" -- whips by at breakneck speed, while the second side is slower yet no less rowdy or welcoming.
AllMusic Review by Andy Kellman