The Sun Sawed in 1/2

Mind Flip

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If the Sun Sawed in 1/2's NotLame releases were Elvis Costello-inspired pop, it was on the 1995 album that the band truly established its sound. Mind Flip, with only ten tracks, is a pure pop delight from start to finish. The guitars ring, the melodies are a little quirky, and the songs are ultimately rewarding, particularly on repeat listens. Sonically, Mind Flip is much tougher than its predecessors, and many of the more fantastic elements of those albums have been stripped away. This is a good thing, actually. Instead of seeming tame, the band sounds in marvellous form; they knock out one great pop song after another for the album's brief 30 minutes. With Mind Flip, the Sun Sawed In 1/2 stripped back their previous excesses -- namely their storybook quality and sub-Steely Dan instrumentations -- but kept their quirky, bizarre pop sense and lyrical smarts, crafting one of their finest albums and a turning point in their career. Not surprisingly, Mind Flip was the band's first to gain much radio attention; the album's first single, the bubbly "Green M&Ms," caught the attention of both St. Louis alternative radio and power pop aficionados around the country. While arguably not quite as great as what would soon follow, Mind Flip was a major step forward for the band and was the first album to establish a trademark sound.

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