Together PANGEA

Bulls and Roosters

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    8
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AllMusic Review by

After the raucous garage punk of 2012’s Living Dummy, and something grungier and less feral on follow-up Badillac, Together PANGEA’s fourth long-player spins yet another version of garage for their most simpatico release yet. With a title inspired by John Baldessari's text painting Tips for Artists Who Want to Sell, Bulls and Roosters is the band’s Nettwerk label debut. The album takes its cues from the early British Invasion (think the Animals and the Rolling Stones) and, occasionally, post-punk more than from the previous generation's garage punk, and with cleaner production. The Los Angeles quartet still sports a loose and lively performance style and bratty demeanor, though, along the lines of contemporaries like Twin Peaks and, to a lesser degree, Thee Oh Sees. With only one song over four-minutes long and the majority under three, it’s a 13-song set of short, melodic, adrenalized tunes with hooky choruses that makes it hard to sift singles from the album. "Kenmore Ave." is one of a few tracks with synth or guitar tones that bring some early-'80s Britain into the mix, while singer William Keegan does his best Jagger on the strutting "Money on It" ("I put my money on you"). Songs like "Southern Comfort" and "Better Find Out" kick up the tempo, and "The Cold" wallows in guitar twang, even after the group whistling and guitar solos kick in. It's hard to say if fans of prior albums will follow them through more tinkering with their sound, but the songwriting gets an upgrade here, and with some variety and no dull stretches, it's a charmer.

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