Cramer

Cramer

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For all the Yeah Yeah Yeahs popping up around New York City in the aught years, there are a million Brent Cramers slow-burning in line for the next John Mayer crown. A Dallas-raised multi-instrumentalist whose formative years must have been spent sulking in a spit-shined coffee shop, Cramer did like most middle class aspiring artists and moved to the big city by way of Columbia University. This self-title debut is a freshman year whirlwind -- a sampling of every interesting sound around, without context and with an aire of embarrassing naivete -- that exposes the group's considerable musicianship and aparrent disregard for continuity. Tracks like "Number One" and "Mercy Me" betray a fascination with campy swing by way of slick punk production while "Fun Is Free" is straight up Green Day basement tapes, repleat with sing-along chorus worthy of a CBGB's matinee show. Above all this genre-crossing is the flat croak of Brent Cramer's, a sort of humorless Malkmus uttering half-wit cynicism only to be erased when finally out of the dorms and faced with the reality of music-making and living he has yet to tap.

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