Dancer EquiredAlbum | Times New Viking By Chris Payne
Midwestern trio cleans up just a smidge.
Those looking for proof that indie rock's biggest devotees to lo-fi fuzz can sometimes clean up their acts, gaze upon Times New Viking. Since 2005, the Columbus, Ohio trio of guitarist Jared Phillips, vocalist/drummer Adam Elliott, and vocalist/keyboardist Beth Murphy has been churning out nuggets of lo-fi splendor, first for the ragtag Slitbreeze Records imprint, and later for indie mainstay Matador. In a number of ways, LP number five is a departure for these Midwestern noise pop/typeface enthusiasts. It is the first of their albums to have been recorded in an actual studio, and accordingly, individual instruments and vocalists can be picked out (well, usually) for the first time in their noisy run. "No Room To Live" and "Ever Falling In Love" would never be mistaken for mixtape-ready indie pop, though they make for likable Guided By Voices-inspired rackets. Tracks like "Ways To Go" and "Don't Go To Liverpool" showcase the trio at their best, with Murphy's vocals melting into Elliot's, and her ramshackle keyboards leading the melody. For a band that had previously recorded albums onto discarded VHS tapes, Dancer Equired manages to retain much of Times New Viking's homespun sincerity while upping the ante in both songwriting and presentation.
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