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Category:    Home > Reviews > Pop > Rock > The 88 - Over & Over (CD)

The 88 Ė Over & Over (CD)


Sound: B+†††† Music: B+



When the Southern California Rock band The 88 showed up with their debut album Kind Of Light a year ago, it was very well received and got one of the best reviews for a music album in the history of this site.I liked it, though not as much as Mike Farmer.This time, with Over & Over (2005), I am ready to do some raving of my own for their sophomore set.


Singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist Keith Sletterdahl is back with cleverer phrasing for the lyrics and a great voice that has actually become better between albums.The songs are as follows:


1)     Hide Another Mistake

2)     All Ďcause Of You

3)     Nobody Cares

4)     Bowls

5)     Head Cut Off

6)     Battle Scar

7)     Coming Home

8)     You Belong To Me

9)     Haunt You

10) Jesus Is Good

11) Everybody Loves Me

12) Not Enough



The opening track hints at the albumís title and is a remarkable post-Beatles rocker that most succeeds in being the kind of clever Pop/Rock they made possible.I love its energy, forwardness and trickiness.Instead of being followed by filler, surprise, you get more great songs!Nobody Cares is upbeat considering what it honestly takes on, but thatís the greatness of such Pop, which can handle darkness without felling the need to be dark.That has too often, especially of late, become a spoof of itself.Havenít You remembers how Funk and Soul settled nicely into Pop/Rock like the music of Rod Stewart, Lee Michaels and so many great hits of the time.Oh, and Track 8 is NOT the Carly Simon hit, though it is a good record too.


The PCM 16Bit/44.1kHz 2.0 CD Stereo sound once again is also exceptional for an independent production from Mootron Records (love that name).Adam Merrinís piano, Brandon Jayís guitar, Carlos Torresí guitar and Mark Vasapolliís drums meld together like a real Rock bandís members and their talents should.Compare this albumís music to anything from Oasis, plus the side of The Strokes and similar bands from the time that tried to do The Beatles in Joe Jackson Iím The Man/Is She Really Going Out With Him? outfits in a cycle that passed quickly.You hear everything go right here where those bands went wrong, especially the former, which is a separate essay.


Also, I think the album art design is one of the best we have seen in a while, with its 1970s look, in descript brunette chick listening on her giant headphones to the album on a vinyl turntable.It tends to reflect the ambition and encompassing feel of the album itself, getting back to great music lost.The album is constantly filled with such energy and is one of the most authentic attempts to sound like the 1970s since before Beckís terrific Sea Change.Too bad this is not in SACD or DVD-Audio yet.For more on the band and getting their CDs, visit http://www.the88.net and learn even more.



-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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