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Canada's Green Highways

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Album Review

Mark Robinson certainly had his work cut out for him after coming off of one of 2000's best indie pop records. He set a standard in that vein of music with the numerous releases that he put out under many guises on his own Teenbeat label. America's Green Highways is no different in that Robinson maintains a very high level of sophistication for a style of music that is viewed by many as disposable. This record is more complex than the previous year's Tiger Banana as Trevor Kampmann oversees production duties here. Known for his brilliant low-tech electro as Holland, Kampmann lends a conservative yet experienced hand in the crisp final product. One can sense his presence on tracks like "100% Guaranteed" where a cheap drum box provides the backing beat to Robinson's cool and passionate vocals. Though these lyrics are not quite as personal as usual, Robinson seems a bit more at ease on this record and takes more chances instrumentally. While the odd track may resemble Tiger Banana's four-chord, stark, skeletal song structures, Robinson has found a perfect pop formula not unlike Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys' and he truly makes it sound easier than it really is.

Biography

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Mark Robinson is best known as the guitarist and vocalist of the beloved indie pop band Unrest, in addition to being the entrepreneur of Teen Beat Records, a label that fired off its first release in 1985. While in high school during the early '80s he formed Unrest with Phil Krauth, which lasted several albums and several singles into the mid-'90s. Shortly after the demise of that band, he formed Air Miami with other Unrest-mate Bridget Cross. Breaking up after an album and EP, Robinson moved on...
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Canada's Green Highways, Mark Robinson
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