Eleanor Friedberger - "Sweetest Girl" (Singles Going Steady)

“Sweetest Girl” highlights Eleanor Friedberger's knack for crafting an aggressive yet appealing and catchy rocker.

Timothy Gabriele: Eleanor Friedberger keeps the formula simple on “Sweetest Girl”: lyrics caught in permanent loop interspersed with some serious classic rock riffage and a slightly crooked rhythmic gait. We’re about as far away from Blueberry Boat as you can get before you start coming back again. As such, it’s kind of hard to argue against it or ask for more. It ain’t much, but it’ll do just fine occupying three minutes of your time. [6/10]

Jordan Blum: Seeing as how Eleanor Friedberger’s main outfit, the Fiery Furnaces, is among the most idiosyncratic, adventurous, and inaccessible yet brilliant musical projects of the last 20 years, you might expect her solo work to be similarly obtuse. However, “Sweetest Girl” chooses instead to highlight her knack for crafting an aggressive yet appealing and catchy rocker. There’s a tinge of ‘60s psychedelia here, as well as the punky attitude of the Who and the Clash. The video complements the song well, too, as it evokes the publicity clips of late '60s icons like the Beatles and the Moody Blues. (I mean, the closing voice-over loop seems plucked from the end of Sgt. Pepper or the middle of Magical Mystery Tour). [7/10]

John Garratt: Wow, someone wishes it were still the '70s. I can't blame the sentiment either. In the Me decade, I never would have been in danger of wasting hours on the internet only to stumble upon a video that looks like it required as much effort and passion to make as the song accompanying it. [3/10]

SCORE: 5.33

Over the Rainbow: An Interview With Herb Alpert

Music legend Herb Alpert discusses his new album, Over the Rainbow, maintaining his artistic drive, and his place in music history. "If we tried to start A&M in today's environment, we'd have no chance. I don't know if I'd get a start as a trumpet player. But I keep doing this because I'm having fun."

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