Ok Go - Of The Colour Of The Sky
With all of the hub-bub that surrounds OK Go's clever videos it is easy to overlook that these boys know how to pen some catchy power pop songs. Don't fret though, you won't have to worry about overlooking them on their new album Of the Colour of the Sky, because they aren't there in the first place.
Some bands you expect to experiment and push boundaries from album to album. You are intrigued to hear what Radiohead, The Flaming Lips, or Animal Collective have come up with. Others, like Matthew Sweet, Fountains Of Wayne, and yes OK Go, you look forward to the comfort of familiarity. You know what you're getting when you go in, and that makes you feel good.
So when OK Go offers up an album like this that strays from the hook-filled pop rock you expected, you react vehemently. You shiver as you listen to the cluttered mess of "Needing/Getting" and other songs that sound like Flaming Lips gone horribly wrong.
You know how great and catchy OK Go's songwriting can be. So you bristle as you hear the stripped down dullness of "Last Leaf". The hair on the back of your neck stands up when you take in the nails-on-a-chalkboard that are the plodding "While You Were Asleep" and the seemingly interminable "In the Glass". You also find yourself wondering aloud whether they really needed to recycle the exact same shimmering guitar part in at least three songs.
Not all of the exploration goes awry. Tracks like "Skyscraper" and "White Knuckles" boast a newfound funky groove, which when coupled with falsetto vocals as on "WTF?", bear a striking Prince-ish sound.
In the end though you hold onto a slim thread of hope. Knowing the band's sense of humour you say to yourself "Ok, nice joke guys. Now where's the real album?".
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