Once you get past the sophomoric band name and junior-high-grade double entendres, Morningwood is pretty darn irresistible. The NYC group's oft-delayed full-length whirls in a hormone-charged haze of fizzy new-wave cheerleading chants, punkish dance beats, and vocalist Chantal Claret's little-girl-lost coos and snarls. Meanwhile, Gil Norton's production touch feels heavy (check the protruding basslines and supercrunchy guitars recalling famous clients the Pixies), but a better touchstone here might be Le Tigre, had that band skipped current events class to go smoke in the bathroom and make out behind the bleachers. "Nth Degree" (a Technicolor-keyboard explosion destined to pack dancefloors) and the punchy Joan Jett electro bomb "Jetsetter" particularly shine, but Morningwood's second half unfortunately can't maintain this tireless energy. Perhaps it's fitting for such a raucous debut to eventually go limp.
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