Guided By Voices
Class Clown Spots a UFO - FIRE
FILTER Grade: 73%
By Kurt Orzeck on June 13, 2012
Well, when it rains, it pours: After an eight-year dry spell, the reunited Guided by Voices are flooding fans with three full-lengths this year. Class Clown is the middle one, and like all GBV releases, it is a mishmash of melodic, A-side-worthy compositions (the acoustic, clear-headed “Forever Until It Breaks”; the contemplative, hushed “Be Impeccable”) and half-formed snippets (the cacophonous, headachy “Worm w/7 Broken Hearts”; the aptly titled but nonetheless endearing “Lost in Space”). One of the album’s three formal singles, “Keep It In Motion”—which also came out as an EP earlier this year—finds frontman Robert Pollard calling out the title phrase over a drum machine as if he were a Pilates instructor… A 54-year-old, pot-bellied, white-haired, probably drunk Pilates instructor. The secret to his band has once again become clear: more may be less, but more and more and more surely cannot be. How he still has the energy and creative juice to endlessly pump out 21-song albums, on the other hand, will continue to be a mystery to Guided By Voices fans—and doctors alike, presumably.