Free of a major-label, the Spiders show that nothing has changed: they're still as infectiously poppy as, well, ever.
What happened to the Pink Spiders? The Nashville trio of Matt Friction, Jon Decious, and Bob Ferrari were supposed to be huge. After all, their 2006 major-label debut Teenage Graffiti was produced by Ric Ocasek, it featured a killer single by the name of "Little Razorblade", and the group was about as accessible and poppy you could get without delving into (shudder) full-on Jonas Brothers territory. Though the Spiders find themselves on a smaller label with Sweat It Out -- their latest -- the size of their choruses has remained exactly the same: huge.
"Truth or Dare" is one of those giddy six-string ringers that recalls Fountains of Wayne at their rockingest, "Gimme Chemicals" might as well have been released at the height of the Britpop phenomenon, and the almost ska-like "Settling for You" marries self-deprecating lyrical themes to the most upbeat of lyrical harmonies. It's not all a bubblegum knockout though ("Falling With Every Step" is as half-baked a Big Star song as there ever was), but when Friction asks "how can I trust a bridge if I didn't build it?" on closing jaunt "Mrs. Ruston", it feels as if the band have answered their own question: they're building themselves back from scratch, and for something as volatile as sugary guitar pop, The Pink Spiders' bridge is as sturdy as its ever been.