The Shins formed in 1992, a time, of course, when Grunge was swarming the United States. They brought together a wonderful sound of post-punk garage rock, Chicago charged Indie, and down right Brian Wilson inspired pop. It took them 9 years to get to the record I’m reviewing - a simply outstanding one, cultured by years spent together as a band, finding their niche. touring with the likes of Modest Mouse has had it's effects, you can hear their inspiration, but above all, that of Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys. Melody is everything, here, a truly, inspired and inspiring album.
Caring Is Creepy
8/10 - a very good opener, it really lets you in on the kind of quality you're about to experience. Intricate lyrics dominate, eerie sounds, vocal techniques that hint Modest Mouse. Simple and effective this song, organs, guitars, dusty drums fuse, verse and chorus vary so nicely.
One By One All Day
9/10 - this song takes the album and runs with it. brilliant tempo, beach boys drums make themselves felt. The lyrics are fantastic, worthy of the title, really worldly stuff, reflective and innocent. Trails out nicely. A sunny, upbeat side of the album.
The Weird Divide
8/10 - a mellow, relaxed song, very calming and mood concerned. Mood is the key here, and we really hear the Brian Wilson come out. It acts as a really great bridge, a calmer, between One by one all day and the next outstanding track of the album.
Know Your Opinion!
10/10 - A great song. So upbeat, with a great opening "Shout out, pimpled and angry!". the mood changes are superb, and surprisingly short, i feel it deserves longer!
Girl Inform Me
8/10 - a nice little song, Brian Wilson is heard even more in his vocals, and the talking at the very end of the track is very reminiscent.
10/10 - wonderful song. very touching, but not at all sad or depressing. the perfect balance. the acoustic is so effective in this track in fusion with the complementing bass, that plays unison to the vocals. The vocals are so great, a real sitting-round-the-camp-fire nature, as the entire song is. The song's best moments occur in it's fluid chorus 'if you'd took to me like, a gull takes to the wind'. The electric, Ryan Adams-like, pops in now and again with excellent, complimenting lines.
The celibate life
7/10 - Short but filling in very well. cool guitar sounds.
Girl On The Wing
7/10 - a track that brings the album back up to a strong tempo again. A driving rock 'n' roll beat makes this song, stronger guitars, still some nice Beach Boys intertwining harmony vocals
8/10 - an eerie song, reminding us of the opener, a baroque style cello runs up and down in the back, spooky vocals, and a nice mood changer. funny ending, with the sound of kids laughing.
Pressed In a Book
7/10 - a nice Beatles-esque track, retro style, nice tempo changes, just follows with the rest of the album, great, easy listening melody.
I'm not sure if there's an 11th track, it may be only on the US version. Let me know if there is, I’d be dying to hear it.
All I can say is, you've got to hear this album!