Originally released in 2003 by the Wisconsin indie No Karma, this split CD featuring a pre-Meadowlands Wrens and Milwaukee popsters Five Mod Four has been reissued -- due primarily to the Wrens' newfound success -- on the Chicago-based Contraphonic label. The Wrens provide three of the seven tracks here -- the track listing boasts eight, but one is merely an expletive-filled segue -- all of which rely on the kind of fuzzy Archers of Loaf/Pavement-esque slacker rock that morphs not-so-effortlessly between frantic and heartfelt. The Five Mod Four offer much of the same, but opted to re-record the original tracks due to discontentment with the production. Theirs is a more subdued, Midwest take on Replacements-era college rock and a surprisingly engaging one at that. For a split EP that's merely capitalizing on the success of the more famous of the two bands, it's interesting that the better material is provided by the underdogs.
AllMusic Review by James Christopher Monger