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Album Review

Just in case you thought that the only thing they were capable of was smart-aleck herky-jerk novelty tunes, on John Henry John Flansburgh and John Linnell put together an honest-to-goodness rock band and show that they know how to use it. And the result is one of the more satisfying They Might Be Giants projects, a crunchy yet sweet assortment of the usual bemusement ("Unrelated Thing"), weirdness ("Spy"), and smart-aleck herky-jerk novelty tunes ("Meet James Ensor," "Extra Savoir Faire") bolstered by unusually hard-rocking accompaniment. Kudos to bass player (and Pere Ubu alumnus) Tony Maimone and to drummer Brian Doherty for coming up with the tectonic groove that powers "AKA Driver" and to everyone involved for the irresistible guitar pop of "Subliminal" and "I Should Be Allowed to Think."

Biography

Formed: 1983 in Boston, MA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Combining a knack for infectious melodies with a quirky, bizarre sense of humor and a vaguely avant-garde aesthetic borrowed from the New York post-punk underground, They Might Be Giants became one of the most unlikely alternative success stories of the late '80s and early '90s. Musically, John Flansburgh and John Linnell borrowed from everywhere, but their freewheeling eclecticism was enhanced by their arcane, geeky sense of humor. The duo would reference everything from British Invasion to Tin...
Full bio

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