Tapes ’n Tapes
Outside - Ibid
FILTER Grade: 84%
By Marissa Moss on January 12, 2011
“I am not original,” Tapes ’n Tapes frontman Josh Grier moans dissonantly in the fuzzy, electrified anthem “On and On.” It’s a funny admission considering the Minneapolis foursome has always been plagued, even when they first emerged as indie blog darlings, by comparisons—they’ve been the yeah-less Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, Pavement 2.0 and drawn plenty from (and criticism for sounding too much like) Pixies, Modest Mouse and anyone else who plays with irreverent lyrics, distortion mics and shout-singing. Outside (the band’s third), however, finds footing in more melodic—at times, even poppy—songwriting. “One in the World,” is a Strokes-y number complete with horns, “Freak Out” sounds like a sober Babyshambles and there’s even a stab at new wave doo-wop on “People You Know.” It’s a cleaner, catchier Tapes ’n Tapes that, despite often flaunting rather than infusing its influences, may actually leave you humming its tunes.