On ...Earth to the Dandy Warhols..., Courtney Taylor and company do indeed seem to be a little more down to earth than they were on the very uneven Odditorium or the Warlords of Mars, debuting their own label with a much more consistent collection of songs. That's "consistent" in terms of quality -- the Dandy Warhols always seem the most comfortable when they're hopping from sound to sound, mood to mood, instead of sticking with just one approach for an entire album. If their eclecticism can be considered a signature Warhols sound, then ...Earth to the Dandy Warhols... has it; it often feels like an update on Thirteen Tales from Modern Bohemia. The band roams from driving, psychedelic rock on the opening track, "The World the People Together (Come On)" -- which, with its trippy strumming and lyrics like "The love that you give is exactly the love that you take," sounds like a '60s love-in shot into space -- to "Mission Control"'s blobby synth rock to "Beast of All Saints," a massive, empty-hearted ballad that shoots past the band's own "Godless" to rival Spiritualized's interstellar brooding. The band even does its best impression of the Rolling Stones' "Miss You" on "Welcome to the Third World," although Taylor's borderline-obnoxious vocals and attitude undermine some of the song's cool. Attitude also reigns on the stylishly tongue-in-cheek "Talk Radio" and more flamboyantly on "The Legend of the Last of the Outlaw Truckers aka the Ballad of Sheriff Shorty," a psychobilly-tinged rocker embellished with strings and gunfire. However, the camp factor is surprisingly low on most of ...Earth to the Dandy Warhols..., as is the number of songs about frenemies and drugs. The band focuses on love, rather than friendships, gone wrong on the deconstructed chamber pop of "And Then I Dreamt of Yes" and "Now You Love Me"'s minor-key brooding and bragging. Toward the album's end, however, the band's restraint unravels, with mixed results: "Mis Amigos," which is as much about hanging out with friends as it is about pot, is a gleeful, red-eyed fiesta; "Valerie Yum" starts out as stomping pop, then falls into an aptly slowed down, spoken word section before revving up again; and the final track, "Musee d' Nougat," a 15-minute trawl through French-accented vocals and formless synth drones, seems to be where the Dandy Warhols put most of their annoying ticks on this album. Before that song, though, ...Earth to the Dandy Warhols... finds the band breaking some new ground with "Love Song," a bit of futuristic Americana with intricate fingerpicked guitars and banjos buffeted by keyboards, and "Wasp in the Lotus," an electro-psych epic swathed in massive feedback squalls. The best moments of ...Earth to the Dandy Warhols... rival the Dandys' finest work, and despite some weak spots, it's a giant leap in the right direction.
AllMusic Review by Heather Phares