A far superior effort to Sloan's scattershot debut, 1994's Twice Removed is a clever and varied collection of smart and catchy pop songs. Without the grunge-era production that smothered some of the best songs on Smeared, the sparkling wit of the lyrics and catchy directness of the melodies shine through. All four members write and sing, which accounts for the variation between songs like the punkish opener, "Penpals," and the chiming guitars and "ba-ba-ba" chorus of the sublime "People of the Sky," the highest of the album's high points. Other goodies include the puckish media slam "I Hate My Generation" and the dreamy, largely acoustic closer, "I Can Feel It," with its harmonies by Jale's Jennifer Pierce. Not everything works quite so well -- the seven-minute "Before I Do" is at least two and a half minutes too long -- but Twice Removed was the first indication that Sloan was more than Canada's answer to the Lemonheads.