Jokey and often very funny but never just silly -- much like They Might Be Giants, the Young Fresh Fellows, and early Barenaked Ladies, to name three similar bands who polarize listeners in much the same way that Life in a Blender might -- 1992's It Likes Me showcases Don Ralph's knack for quirky lyrics and scruffy guitar-based indie pop. At 20 songs in just over an hour, the album sounds a little overstuffed, with a "throw it on the wall and see if it sticks" quality that gets a little tiresome; judiciously pruned (getting rid of the overlong and underwritten "Kitten Packs a Rod" and "Cranial Mudslide," which plays like some bizarre deadpan parody of Green on Red's early psychedelic-stoner period, would be a good start) and re-sequenced to emphasize gems like the throbbing "Friend from Quebec" and the sweetly jangle poppy "Cool Mom," It Likes Me could have been adopted by an entire generation of self-conscious freshmen at liberal arts colleges. As it stands, it's an uneven listen, but one that rewards a little digging.
It Likes Me Review
by Stewart Mason