Electric Version

Electric Version

5.0 1
by The New Pornographers

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Indie-rock luminaries Carl Newman (Zumpano), Dan Bejar (Destroyer), and Neko Case made their debut as the New Pornographers in 2000 with the surprisingly addictive Mass Romantic. Critics hailed the Pornographers -- largely a side project for the members…  See more details below


Indie-rock luminaries Carl Newman (Zumpano), Dan Bejar (Destroyer), and Neko Case made their debut as the New Pornographers in 2000 with the surprisingly addictive Mass Romantic. Critics hailed the Pornographers -- largely a side project for the members -- as the perfect amalgam of '70s power pop (Todd Rundgren, Cheap Trick), angular new wave (XTC, Cars), and smart-ass indie spirit (Pavement, Guided by Voices). On their follow-up, Electric Version, the Vancouver-based collective outstrip their early promise, with energy to spare. The songs here -- three were penned by Bejar, the rest by Newman -- burst with hooks and harmonies, buzzing keyboards and jangling guitars. Trumping Weezer's geeky-but-hip tunes and cardigan-clad posturing, the New Pornographers seem to have absorbed several decades' worth of power-pop past: You'll hear the kinetic rush of Drums and Wires–era XTC in Newman's title cut and the Burundi drum patterns of "Antmusic" in his "New Face," while Bejar's "Chump Change" invokes T. Rex glam and his "Testament to Youth in Verse" owes a debt to the snarl of Robyn Hitchcock and Ray Davies. Even so, it never sounds forced. For her part, the irresistible Case trades verses with Newman on the soaring "The Laws Have Changed," which boasts magnetic nah-nah-nah backing vocals, and takes the lead on the dizzying "All for Swinging You Around." You won't find many better albums emerging from the indie underground in 2003 than Electric Version.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - MacKenzie Wilson
Three years after the sonic honey of Mass Romantic, the New Pornographers come up smiling once more with their sophomore effort and Matador debut, Electric Version. These beloved indie rockers stick with the syrupy goodness found on their first album, but opt to turn the amps up for a brighter, slicker sound, hence the title. It's a kitschy play on the band's power pop, and Carl Newman and secret member Dan Bejar keep their clever lyrical twists in tune. Twiddling riffs and organs dance with Neko Case's sunny harmonies on the rollicking "It's Only Divine Right" and "From Blown Speakers." The energy is there, but Electric Version captures a new kind of energy from the New Pornographers. While Mass Romantic was a little more quirky in spirit, Electric Version is more polished. They took just under a year to create this album, so naturally a fresh confidence would transpire and "The Laws Have Changed" highlights the New Pornographers' musical growth. This album standout is bold as brass, drenched in Case and Newman's perky vocals. "All for Swinging You Around" takes things further with wacky synth beats and tripped-up percussion, Velocity Girl-style, but its the band's own glossed-over rock & roll on "Miss Teen Worldpower" that truly represents the smooth emotion and might behind the New Pornographers' sound. Electric Version is an enjoyable and easy listen, chock-full of hungry hooks and brimming with indie rock's classic humility.
Rolling Stone - Christian Hoard
Electric Version will no doubt prove one of the year's best summertime rock records.
Billboard - Joshua Klein
Power pop just doesn't get any more powerful or poppy than this, with all three singers in fine form and the band -- all high-strung keyboards and frenetic drums -- blazing away at the speed of sound.

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Product Details

Release Date:
Matador Records

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

New Pornographers   Primary Artist
Carl Newman   Guitar,Keyboards,Vocals,Melodion
Neko Case   Vocals
Kurt Dahle   Percussion,Drums,Vocals,Double Bass
Nora O'Connor   Vocals
Daniel Bejar   Vocals
John Collins   Bass,Keyboards,Guitar (Baritone)
Todd Fancey   Guitar,Keyboards
Blaine Thurier   Keyboards

Technical Credits

Carl Newman   Cover Art
Mike Hagler   Vocal Engineer
Randy "Tex" Iwata   Cover Art
Howard Redekopp   Engineer
New Pornographers   Producer
John Collins   Engineer
A.C. Newman   Composer

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Electric Version 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago