New Plastic Ideas – week of June 14 2012

C lass Clown Spots a UFO is the second new album from the reunited Guided by Voices this year and I’m sure there’s probably a great song or two on it. Early consensus seems to be “it’s better than Let’s Go Eat the Factory ” but that’s also from eager GBV fans who should have more useful opinions in a few months — you know just in time for Bob Pollard and co. to release something else! I do hope these dads get to play on late-night TV again soon as Tobin Sprout’s “fell on my ass!” moment on Letterman earlier this year was rock ’n’ roll magic. Maybe this time we’ll get a YouTube scandal — imagine Bob Pollard rampaging through an Ohio tavern throwing bottles and yelling “don’t you know who I am? I’m Bob fucking Pollard!” It’s believable thought right?

But there’s a party over in Chicago: Piñata by Volcano! The group’s days of volatile guitar spasms are in the past but there’s still enough scrappiness here that I could see this being really mind-opening to the right person. As in say you’ve got a sibling that really likes Muse or something equally boring — Piñata might steer them in the right direction. Honestly this isn’t really how I wanted to hear Volcano! develop but Piñata does make an interesting listen if you’re into dramatic and oddly skewed art-pop.

For a few words on The Bouncing Souls ’ newest album Comet I had to travel through time and interview my 14-year-old self. I asked him “True Believer what do you think of this future Bouncing Souls album?” His response was “Cool it sounds like the Bouncing Souls! You want to go skateboarding or something?” I didn’t have the heart to tell him that the Souls’ earnest pop-punk anthems have worn thin to my ears over the years so I pushed him back into his universe shouting “High school isn’t going to sleep through itself little dude!”

Jaill ’s Traps recently made it onto my handy list of records to play at work for when I’m sick of thinking about music. Traps is an agreeable and well-rounded indie rock album on Sub Pop which in record-store clerk terms means “most people will probably like this.” Basically so long as this lightly psychedelic pop trio from Milwaukee doesn’t falter into Blitzen Trapper syndrome in an album or two (i.e. become an un-self-aware parodic joke of a band) albums like Traps should continue to keep Jaill in the clear for summer hangouts to come.

Or y’know fuck it. Eternal Tapestry ’s new record is called Dawn in 2 Dimensions . Forget “lightly psychedelic” — you can practically hear the weed coming off these grooves. Solo out into the great beyond: “I’d rather be a lightning rod than a seismograph.”