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  Pull the Rabbit Ears  
  Eenie Meenie  
Release Date:
Reviewed by:
  Indoor Miner  

According to the blurb that accompanied this release, PINE*AM are an "all girl Japanese electropop band" whose three members live in different cities in Japan and Canada, and who are only able to practice in the US and make music via the Internet. I'm sure the logistics involved don't make this easy, but we should be grateful that these young ladies don't let geography stand in their way. PINE*AM are an extremely talented trio who have crammed this release with lots of pretty melodies and then covered them in a multitude of interesting arrangements.

Pull the Rabbit Ears opens strongly with the electro Mackerel Sky, which mines a similar field to last year's excellent Lali Puna album, Faking The Books. This is followed by the dreamy, slightly Lori & The Chameleons-like Starlight Star Bright; two of the best tracks on the album. There's lots of other good stuff here, however. Rhyme Mime is a jaunty little Pop Muzik-like number with a pretty Ladytron type synth line over the top. The rather daft Cosmic Glider starts off like the theme tune to some old English sitcom before a wonderfully catchy chorus kicks in, whilst Cactus shows PINE*AM at their most mellow, being an almost soothing Air-like song with lots of lovely du-du-du's in the background.

Indeed every track, whilst having the band's identity written all over them, shows PINE*AM veering off in different directions. Red Car is a funky little number with a touch of Talking Heads about it, whilst Do I Know You is so 60s influenced that you can imagine seeing it some old movie from that era. You know, the type of record playing as the hip young P.I. enters the swinging London discotheque with swirling lights, where young ladies in short skirts shake those hips whilst doing all that arm pushing and waving that was so popular at that time. Either that, or we fast forward to much more recent times and Austin Powers enters, grins and starts to strut his inimitable stuff! The album ends on a real high with Gymnopedia 0.1, which is a real toe-tapper with shades of Stereolab about it.

PINE*AM apparently stands for "Playing Intense Neutral Electronica ad nauseAM". How much truth there is in that I can only guess, but one thing I do know is that this is a fine release that manages to be both clever and loveable.

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