Enjoying success in the early and mid-'90s and still surviving to release relevant music in 2005 is a feat most Britpop bands can't touch. But this is Teenage Fanclub's seventh album, fifteen years after its debut and five years since its last full-length. With it, the Scottish quartet seems to have reached a place of comfortable acceptance; recorded in Chicago with John McEntire of Tortoise fame, Man-Made presents melodic pop at its finest, with more than a hint of the West Coast canyon rock (the Byrds, Neil Young) the Fannies have always plainly adored. Full of sunshine and gorgeous harmonies, "Cells" could have been written in the full bloom of the '60s with its oscillating guitar strums and perfect refrains, while "Born Under a Good Sign" buzzes with friendly, beach-oriented fuzz-tones. The sun does shine in Scotland sometimes.
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