March 23, 2003

Summer Hymns "Value Series Volume One: Fool's Gold"

Value Series Volume 1: Fools Gold is not a new Summer Hymns album. They even said so in their press release, stating that it's meant to 'kill time between albums.' And, you know what? That description pretty much sums up this little release. Instead of sounding like a full-length record, this lowkey, lo-fi record sounds like a band just hangin' around in their living room, playing songs they know, but playing them reall mellow-like, ya know? Not really rehearsin', not really practicin', just...jamming. And drinking beer. And smoking cigarettes of different forms. And just having a good old time about it. The music is rough yet charming; sometimes, such as "Button Flies" and "Crazy Baby," they're just silly, other times, like "What they Really Do" and "It's Just Not Right," they're pretty. They even offer up two gorgeous, 'didn't recognize 'em at first' covers of George Harrison's "Behind That Locked Door" and Johnny 'Guitar' Watson's "It Takes Two." Value Series Vol. 1: Fools Gold is a cookie-dough record; if they'd actually baked these songs, the results would have been really good and yummy and delicious--but consuming it raw is just as enjoyable.

--Joseph Kyle

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