The Moffatts

Chapter I: A New Beginning

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The Canadian-born Moffatts -- older brother Scott (guitar) and triplets Bob (drums), Clint (bass) and Dave (keyboards) -- may bring American pop act Hanson to mind with their summery harmonies and bouncy-happy attitude. However, on their latest album, Chapter 1: A New Beginning, they're a little more guitar-oriented than the trio from Tulsa, OK: the Moffatts have shed their country-pop sound in favor of mid- to late-'90s pop-rock. The boys have obviously taken big cues from Matchbox 20's Rob Thomas, with their anguished, "3 A.M."-sounding vocals, and they pull it off rather well. Believe it or not, the Moffatts are a laudable teen pop band -- they've been performing for most of their lives and it shows -- and they play their instruments instead of attempting choreographed dancing and hip thrusting. The album has its share of semi-glossy, gooey songs like "Girl of My Dreams," "Miss You Like Crazy" and "I'll Be There for You," but the melodic, crunchy "Misery" rocks hard for a band that was singing songs like "Itty Bitty Smile" and "Grandma" just four years ago. Chapter 1 shows a lot of promise, and the Moffatts give the term teen idol some credibility.

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