Lonely Planet Boy

Some Songs You Might Enjoy

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The classic example of a band finding itself in the process of recording an album,Some Songs You May Enjoy captures the members of Lonely Planet Boy at the moment they realized their potential and power as a unit. So it is that many of the songs here gel in a way they probably shouldn't, considering their occasionally rambling length and general aw-shucks scruffiness. It helps that Dan Baselj is a naturally gifted singer with a warm, slightly worn tenor, and that the group itself has a knack for interesting arrangements and good musical choices, utilizing a banjo for many of the lead parts and implementing a keyboard in places to fill out the sound. Early tracks like opener "All the Good Ones Are Being Used"; the hooky "M.V.P."; and the wistful, airy "Tire Swing" successfully wrap those strengths around solid, succinct pop structures. Side two takes a turn for the dark and reflective, playing a lot like Lonely Planet Boy's take on Automatic for the People-era R.E.M. While it's all easily listenable, only the sprawling "Pets" and the Flaming Lips by-way-of roots music parable "The Boy Who Never Hurt Anymore" merit their lengthy treatment. All in all, this is a decent, uniquely done soft rock album. As its subtly repulsive sleeve would seem to warn, it isn't always a thing of beauty, but perhaps it's more memorable that way.

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