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The Impossible Box

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Album Review

The inscrutable cover photo looks like it belongs on a Jandek record, suggesting that The Impossible Box is one of those insular, weird little records that only makes sense to its creator, if that. As it happens, Builder's second album sounds like Guided By Voices' rootsy, power popping cousin. Singer/guitarist Mike Crawford has an agreeably adenoidal voice that, in his higher register, strongly recalls that of Mitch Easter; the shambolic rocker "Once in Your Life" and the long semi-psychedelic ballad "If I Care About Anything" sound more than a little like prime Let's Active, no bad thing. Elsewhere, Crawford and company deliver catchy bash-it-out rockers, twangy roots pop, and an impressive line in mid-'80s Amer-indie jangle pop updated with a crunchier, more aggressive edge. They even do a version of New Order's "Love Vigilantes" that sounds like it came straight off the stage at Athens' 40 Watt Club around 1985. This is really good stuff.

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The Impossible Box, Builder
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