The Apples in Stereo 

Electronic Projects for Musicians

Fear not, fans of pure pop. For now, people, the Apples in Stereo aren't "going electronica" on us. The title is just more of their impish sense of humor — Projects is really an odds 'n' sods collection of B-sides of singles, rarities, and a few previously unreleased songs.

Stylistically speaking, there aren't any surprises here. It's more of what these wise-Apples do so well, namely a perky with-a-shot-of-wry cocktail of 1960s bubblegum melodies, light psychedelia, and lo-fi punk-y pop. Imagine a more accomplished-sounding Television Personalities or a cross between the Partridge Family and Robert Pollard. There's the mopey, angst-laden acoustic number ("Hold On to This Day"), the charming ballad dripping with sarcasm ("The Oasis"), and a crackling bit of a pop-culture tribute ("Stephen Stephen," about The Colbert Report). "The Golden Flower" would've been a great album track (or B-side) for the Electric Light Orchestra, and the concluding "Dreams" is, with its dense, dreamy production and forlorn vocals, their grand finale.

Fans of the Elephant 6/Elf Power sphere are gonna be in orbit over this set. (YepRoc)

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