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No, You C'mon

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Album Review

Well, if it's good enough for Tom Waits, Bruce Springsteen, and Guns N' Roses, it must be good enough for Lambchop, and Kurt Wagner's super-sized Nashville chamber pop ensemble have followed in the footsteps of the above-mentioned artists by releasing two albums of new material on the same day. No, You C'mon was written and recorded at the same time as its sister set, Aw C'mon, and stylistically the two albums are cut from the same mold — expansive, lushly arranged pop melodies with classic R&B and country accents, often accompanied by Wagner's engaging cryptic lyrics and nicotine-laced vocals, given life by a 13-piece band and aided by polished string arrangements. In fact, the most difficult question to answer about this music is just what's the difference between Aw C'mon and No, You C'mon? The obvious response is not much of anything, particularly in terms of execution and quality — the two albums sound like twin sides of the same coin, and while Aw C'mon doesn't have a track that rocks as hard as "Nothing Adventurous Please," No, You C'mon lacks a cut as willfully odd as "Women Help to Create the Kind of Men They Despise." In short, there's a serious case of yin and yang going on between these two albums, and it's all but impossible to single out one as better than the other — if you love this band, you're going to want to have both, as they represent Lambchop's strange but beautiful worldview writ large, and if you've never heard the band before, both represent the band's current state of mind equally well. In fact, these two discs would have made for a fine double album, and if Lambchop have chosen to regard them as two separate entities, that just means they've released two of the finest albums of 2004 instead of just one.


Formed: 1993 in Nashville, TN

Genre: Alternative

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

Touted as "Nashville's most f*cked-up country band" by their label Merge Records, Lambchop was arguably the most consistently brilliant and unique American group to emerge during the 1990s. Their unclassifiable hybrid of country, soul, jazz, and avant-garde noise seemed at one time or another to drink from every conceivable tributary of contemporary music, its Baroque beauty all held together by the surreal lyrical wit and droll vocal presence of frontman Kurt Wagner. Although Lambchop's ever-rotating...
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No, You C'mon, Lambchop
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