On her 2012 full-length GEM, U.S. Girls brainchild Megan Remy moved her sound from the wild distortions of her early noise pop into a more cultivated traditional rock production, dabbling with glam and dream pop modes and highlighting her robust lead vocals more clearly than ever. For the brief Free Advice Column EP, Remy revisits the collaborative work she began with Canadian hip-hop producer Onakabazien on an earlier reworking of Brandy & Monica’s "The Boy Is Mine." Built on girl group samples but driven with an eerie energy much less sweet than the source material, the four songs on Free Advice Column are dark, exciting updates on the early bubblegum soul template, with creaky and haunted sounds bubbling up through the scratchy layers of borrowed sound. Standout track "Overtime" finds Remy evoking Grimes-meets-Winehouse in a Hitsville U.S.A. mode, and "28 Days" follows suit, warped samples of Motown classics serving as a backdrop for ghastly tales of emotional bloodsucking. Though short-lived, these four songs are some of the most inventive and addictive of the ever-morphing U.S. Girls catalog.
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AllMusic Review by Fred Thomas