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With tongues planted firmly in cheek, the eight songs on Replicator's Winterval album rock without giving away too much ground to the bandmembers' sense of humor. With song titles such as "Soda Troll" and George W. Bush's infamous line "Strategery," the three men who make up the band also don't forget to rock. And rock they do -- quite well, in fact -- and in a very indie/college manner. With famed Shellac member Bob Weston behind the production, it's clear to see that said band is one influence on the members, while fellow Bay Area math rockers A Minor Forest can also be heard via the many stops and starts and time changes. Nonetheless, Winterval is far from the typical math rock album, and thus makes it hard to pin down. A wide frame of references can be drawn in here, as some of the music is silly, with singer/guitarist Conan Neutron yelling "Here's where the words go!" on the Nirvana-esque "Strategery." Other times it's abrasive and harsh while retaining some melody and yet it can also be delicately beautiful as heard on the piano-driven closer. With such a wide range of influences and showcasing those styles quite effectively, a little bit more direction -- it seems like there is almost too much going on here -- would surely showcase Replicator as a band to fill in the shoes of many of the Touch & Go acts.

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