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Electronic Projects for Musicians

The Apples In Stereo

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Album Review

Electronic Projects for Musicians is the second collection of stray tracks by the Apples in Stereo. The first, Science Faire, appeared in 1996 and covered the early days of the band before the release of Fun Trick Noisemaker. This disc rounds up songs included as bonus tracks on Japanese editions of their albums, split-single tracks, B-sides, and some previously unavailable tracks. It misses songs the band placed on compilations ("Time for Bed" from Lemonlime, Vol. 1) and soundtracks ("Signal in the Sky (Let's Go") on the Powerpuff Girls soundtrack), so it can't be considered a complete document of their output. One also realizes as the disc goes on that the Apples didn't save any of their best songs for bonus tracks and B-sides. They are all solid examples of the band's unique blend of indie sweetness, psychedelic experimentation, and solid songcraft. A few songs do stand out though That being said, the real gems on the collection are the shimmering rocker "Shine (In Your Mind") (from Fun Trick Noisemaker), the utterly dreamy "The Oasis" (which appeared on a Kindercore collection and as a bonus track on the Japanese edition of The Discovery of a World Inside the Moone) and the previously unreleased "Dreams," which would have been a very nice addition to the Tone Soul Evolution album. A song that stands out for all the wrong reasons is "Stephen Stephen," the joky and cloying track the band recorded for The Colbert Report. The band's love for the host of the show may indeed be real, but the song has the feel of a desperate grab for attention and feels totally out of place in the band's catalog. It's not enough of a glitch to deter a fan of the band from needing this collection of typically great music. Especially if they didn't have the means to track down all the Japanese releases and non-LP singles featured here.

Biography

Formed: 1993 in Denver, CO

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Sunny pop band the Apples in Stereo were one of the leading lights of the Elephant 6 Recording Company collective, a coterie of likeminded lo-fi indie groups — including the Olivia Tremor Control, Neutral Milk Hotel, and Secret Square — who shared musicians, ideas, and sensibilities. They were led by singer/songwriter Robert Schneider, a native of the tiny town of Ruston, LA, also home to Jeff Mangum (later of Neutral Milk Hotel) as well as William Cullen Hart and Bill Doss (who formed...
Full Bio