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The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt

...Have the Best Day of Your Life

(Luaka Bop; US: 4 May 2010; UK: import)

The Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt is more of a performance piece than it is a band. With elaborate costumes—lead singer Neil Fridd wears a suit made of stuffed animals—huge props and loads of crowd participation, the shows are happenings more than traditional concerts. So right away, it’s a pretty tough task to expect this album to cover all of that ground. One thing that is does well, though, is capture some of the energy of those live shows. This is exuberant, nearly chaotic dance music, full of jumbled keys and bright drums and sing-along vocals. Everything from the album’s title (which, in its entirety, is I Love You. I Love You. I Love You and I’m in Love With You. Have An Awesome Day! Have the Best Day of Your Life!) to frenetic numbers like “Grouphug!” and “In Your Face Suckiness (Our Blood is Rainbows)” shows off the band’s irrepressible personality. However, for all its frantic, unpretentious joy, on record the Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt seems to be missing something. That intricate live show, the visual piece of this performance, carries a lot of the load. Without it, and the interactive part of the live show, there’s a distance that keeps you from really digging into this music. Maybe this is a necessary document. the album as a crib sheet so you can learn the words before you catch the show. If so, it works. As an album on its own, though, it doesn’t hold up quite as well.

Rating:

Matthew Fiander is a music critic for PopMatters and Prefix Magazine. He also writes fiction and his work has appeared in The Yalobusha Review. He received his M.F.A. in Creative Writing from UNC-Greensboro and currently teaches writing and literature at High Point University in High Point, NC. You can follow him on Twitter at @mattfiander.


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