Music review – Guided By Voices: Let’s Go Eat the Factory!

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Guided by Voices
Let’s Go Eat the Factory!
Guided by Voices Inc.

Though Bob Pollard retired the Guided by Voices name in 2004, he didn’t use it as an excuse to catch some rest. Accounting for solo albums and projects like Lifeguards and Boston Spaceships, dude released perhaps eighty hundred records in the last decade. Pollard writes and records the way most people check Facebook – compulsively, absentmindedly, probably sometimes while driving. So the lackluster Let’s Go Eat the Factory!, the official return of classic-lineup GBV, can’t be blamed on rustiness.

That’s not to say that it’s awful. On paper, it’s almost everything you’d expect from these guys: soaring guitars, anthemic vocals, cassette hiss, and songs called “The Unsinkable Fats Domino” and “Doughnut for a Snowman” (the latter a seriously delightful jingle for Krispy Kreme). That said, it’s dull. It’s more consistent than even the best GBV albums, but there’s almost nothing on Factory! worth a sing-a-long or flying kick, which makes no sense considering Pollard’s reputation as a hook factory. No one keeps dictionaries around anymore, but if you call up the Wikipedia page for “phoned in,” the picture will probably be the cover of the “Fats Domino” single.

With Factory!’s followup, Class Clown Spots a UFO, already recorded and slated for 2012 release, there’s little chance that it’ll mine any different territory. But I’ll gladly take some lower lows next time if it means higher highs.

Mason Pitzel
Production Manager

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