Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Reviews:: Wanna Be Your Friend - A Tribute To The Inbreds

I've always liked The Inbreds. Even way back in 94-95 when I was a hip hop zealot of the highest order, I dug the drum & bass pop magic made by Kingston, Ontario transplants Dave Ulrich and Mike O'Neil. When Herohill legend Shawn Lapaix made me the original consistent drumming mix tape, I made sure the Inbreds were represented by songs like Any Sense Of Time and You Will Know. Well lucky for me, and for the tons of other people who continue to love the Inbreds despite their 1998 split, Gooseberry records has released Wanna Be Your Friend: A Tribute To The Inbreds.

I'm a little late on reviewing this one as it's been available since July 31st, but I had a little trouble tracking down a copy. However, with the quality of the Halifax-heavy roster of artists contributing songs, I knew I had to get a review up eventually. Well who's on the roster you ask? Many fine folks like In-Flight Safety, The Superfantastics, Chris Murphy (as The Forum with Sarah Millman, Rebecca Mendoza, and Matt Murphy), former members of Plumtree: Catriona Sturton solo and Carla Gillis & Lynette Gillis as Bontempi, Ruth Minnikin, Share, and The Just Barelys. I have to say, you can tell how highly thought of The Inbreds are by musicians young & old(er) alike just based on the quality of songs they contributed to this project. Few of the renditions are straight covers of the originals, as all the artists put their own twist on them as you'd expect, with some even getting the laptop electro treatment that is popular with the kids now, but they all turned out rather well.

Consdiering they are one of the few groups on the album without any apparent Halifax roots, Langley BC's International Falls does a very Sloan-esque take on Attitude. First song I mention and I'm already bringing out the Sloan comparisons, not very original, last Sloan reference in this review, I promise. It is a mighty catchy song though. Any Sense Of Time is certainly one of The Inbreds signature songs, and In-Flight Safety certainly does it justice. It sounds like In-Flight Safety doing the Inbreds, which I suppose makes sense, but it's a fairly faithful version, with some added "wooo-ooo's" to give it a bit of extra IFS flavour. The Superfantastics Matt and Stephanie trade vocal duties on Yelverton Hill and add some 80's-ish keyboards for good measure. This is one of my favorites on the album, not sure if these two could make something un-likable even if they tried.

Chris Murphy and his friends form the, uhhh, Forum and do a great job with You Will Know. Handclaps, bouncy basslines, vocal harmonies, this sounds a lot like another group Chris is in, but I shall digress. I can't help but wonder if this Sarah Millman is the same Sarah Millman from Halifax who was the aforementioned Mr. Lapaix's accomplice for his legendary Sanderson BBQ smashing caper. Oh well, even if she isn't, I got to mention that story in this review, and it's a great song, so we all win. Well I guess Tom Sanderson nor his BBQ were winners, but once again, it's digression time! Share's quirky electro-hushed version of Turn My Head is awfully likable and hard to get out of your head once it gets in, it's one of my favorites I'd say. Rebekah Higgs (in her Ruby Jean & The Thoughtful Bees guise) adds some hyper drum beats to an otherwise fairly accurate rendition of Amelia Earhart. I like Alicia Penny's (of Tom Fun Orchestra fame) acoustic take on Cut My Throat and the Just Barely's take on the short but ironically sweet Moustache is also rather enjoyable.

Despite all my yammering on, the point here is simple, if you're a fan of The Inbreds at all, you need this. But honestly you don't need to be familiar with the band or their cannon to enjoy the album. I didn't remember a lot of the songs, but they're such catchy pop songs and done with such enthusiasm that they're hard to resist. Congrats to the folks at Gooseberry, and the contributing artists, for putting this together, check it out for yourself.

MP3:: The Superfantastics - Yelverton Hill

MP3:: The Forum - You Will Know

myspace :: buy it

Posted at 8:17 AM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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