Guided by Voices: Under the Bushes Under the Stars
Whoa there. Who is this? Apparently this is Kim Deal of the Pixies’ idea of what GBV should sound like (as she produced the album). I may actually go back on my word and ask for the fuzz back. This sound is too big for these guys. The thumping bass drum threatens to drown out everything and overwhelm the songwriting somehow. It calms down a little bit after the first couple of songs, but it’s funny to hear GBV in full stereo. I guess it wouldn’t be such a shock if this was any other band, but that being their shtick, it’s funny to hear anything else. There are a bunch of good songs on this album, but the production and playing makes them sound more lumbering, rather than the nimble pop snippets that they were on previous efforts. I think part of it was Pollard tinkering with his songwriting, trying to flesh out concepts and song structure. It kind of works and fails at the same time.