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Let's Go! the Best of Splitsville

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Album Review

Splitsville are a Baltimore-based power pop band who started life on the edgier side of the style, playing fast, loud and hooky tunes at full gallop that suggested Too Much Joy with a full head of steam and a less snarky sense of humor. Before long, Splitsville started polishing off the rough edges of their sound, and by the time they recorded The Complete Pet Soul in 2001, their love for the more refined approach of classic period Beatles and Beach Boys became apparent, as their pop became less powerful and more nuanced and intelligent. Let's Go!: The Best of Splitsville charts the group's evolution very well indeed, as they grow from the revved-up power trio that cut "The Misfits" and "The Kids Who Kill for Sugar" to the more ambitious songwriting and production that dominated "The Love Song of B. Douglas Wilson" and "White Dwarf." The trouble with this collection, however, is that it tends to reinforce the argument that as Splitsville grew more accomplished, they became less fun; while there are plenty of bands who could do the same kind of fourth-gear power pop that dominated their first few records, they delivered the goods with high energy and good songcraft, but as they aimed for something grander, they seemed to hit their creative limits, and while the late-innings cuts from 2003's Incorporated are fine, they're also more derivative, and it's hard not to think of other bands who do the same thing as well, if not better, while this spins. Despite this, Let's Go! does a fine job of cherry-picking the highlights from Splitsville's catalog and points to their strengths more than their weaknesses, and fans of post-millennial power pop who are unfamiliar with Splitsville will certainly want to give this a listen.


Formed: 1996

Genre: Pop

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Drummer Brandt Huseman and his twin brother, guitarist Matt Huseman, formed the garage band Splitsville in 1996 as a side project to their power-pop combo Greenberry Woods in tandem with that band's one-time guitar tech, Paul Krysiak, filling the bassist role. Splitsville USA, the 1996 debut from this none-too-serious side project, was released just months before Greenberry Woods split and as a result of the split, the trio decided to continue with Splitsville full time. They signed to the Big Deal...
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Let's Go! the Best of Splitsville, Splitsville
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