Thursday, June 2, 2011
Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.
I know what you're thinking readers, and I too am furious at the fact that Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.'s It's A Corporate World isn't the NASCAR legend's grandson's debut country solo album. It doesn't have great songs about beer and left turns, but it does happen to contain the first full-length of Joshua Epstein and Daniel Zott's electronically-based indie-pop project. Now that the obligatory and terrible racing jokes have been pushed aside, allow me to properly introduce the lively, even quite lovely sound of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. and the smooth groove the Detroit duo have presented fans. It's A Corporate World is a bit of an aural illusion to begin with, as a flutter of electronics and dance-worthy beats give the album a friendly, accessible rhythm, one that thankfully doesn't sacrifice the depth of the album's musicianship in the process.
Fans of the duo's EP Horse Power may be disappointed to know that the duo has recycled "Nothing But Our Love," "Vocal Chords," and the "Simple Girl" from the EP. The songs themselves remain as excellent, "Simple Girl" and its delicate acoustic sound being one of my favorites, but for those hoping for an entirely new package may frown at the inclusion of old material. The cheery psychedelics and ambiance sprinkled throughout the album mixes well enough with the compositions that embrace a dancier aesthetic, though the transition of different tempos can be disorienting. The slow crawl of "When I Open My Eyes" feels a little odd coming from the robotic hand claps of the track before it, "An Ugly Person On A Movie Screen," but the slew of different directions of pop ensures the album's catchier qualities are always on display. I'll probably be alone in wishing for Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.'s future work to be governed less by dance beats and more earthy pieces like "Simple Girl," but It's A Corporate World will provide listeners with the proper smorgasbord of indie-pop varieties and electronic beats to keep the album spinning into the summer months. It's A Corporate World releases on June 7th, through Quite Scientific Records. The album can be pre-ordered here, and the single "Morning Thought" can be downloaded for free here.