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MUSIC REVIEW (Rock)
Sweater Girls, The
Jingle Lingo

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Buy it now!

Label: Bucolic Released: 12/25/1999


Let me be blunt. If you are a fan of indie rock, if you ever were a fan of indie rock, buy this CD. If you haven't listened to any indie rock in a while, this CD will make you feel all nauseous inside like the first kiss on the second date with the girl or boy you've had a crush on for two years and never thought you'd get anywhere near. If you listen to indie rock all the time, this CD will make you wonder why you spent so much time listening to all those other albums and will leave you feeling like you just came through the first white-water rapids of your river adventure and managed to stay in the raft, although you did get pretty wet.

The Sweater Girls are not girls and as far as I can tell they don't wear sweaters. Maybe they sweat on stage and therefore are "sweaters" but I guess then the band name would have to be The Sweating Girls or The Sweaty Girls. I don't know. The come from St. Catharine's, Ontario but they could just as easily come from Athens, Georgia, Tacoma, Washington or maybe Austin, Texas. Their sound is unique while invoking fleeting images of other bands that are or once were great. Check out the inspired vocal madness in the song "Pavement".

Guitar and vocals combine like the chocolate syrup and strawberry goo on your DQ banana split, but without all the artificial sweetness and post-eating nausea. Why so many references to nausea in this review?

Hints of Pavement (a la Shady Lane / Cut Yer Hair) mix with some Chronic Town-era R.E.M. feel and an occasional Northern Pikes (?) vocal intonation into a heady brew that will have you reaching for the play button as soon as the last track ends.

Gems like "Nail Me To Lacrosse" and "The French Have Conceded Defeat" will have you humming obscure stream-of-consciousness lyrics and chirping along with "ooooh" "aaaaah" background vocals, doing the twist and longing for simpler days when chopper bikes with banana seats were cool and the X-Men were only in comics and Picard didn't hang out with them.

The only reason I ever discovered The Sweater Girls is that we (Laguna) were supposed to open for them so I thought I'd check them out. A very fortuitous discovery indeed.

Steve Donnelly Email WWW

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