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The Color Bars, Making Playthings (Paranoiac)
The terrific Making Playthings is an EP that feels like the perfect LP. Eight songs here that don't overstay their welcome. This New York City group doesn't crank out the usual garage slop, but goes the other route and turns in a beautiful and fun psychedelic-inspired pop masterpiece that also hits on a great '70s groove. Fans of both The Beatles and Brian Wilson will really tear into this disc. The harmonies are top notch and the playing and arrangements will take your breath away. Tracks like "All Your Kitchen Ghosts" successfully update psychedelia for the new millennium, while other song such as "Eliza" and "We're a Tag Team" strut around in their finest Lennon/McCartney garb. Still other tunes like "The Last Time I Felt Alive" might even bring to mind the likes of Teenage Fanclub at their most delicate and pretty. A must-have release, no doubt about it.