Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Return of the Rentals
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
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Makes me want to get up and dance
Orphelius Q. Witherspoon | Washington, DC | 08/10/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This isn't an album that will be remembered years down the line, and it won't become your personal anthem, but "Return of the Rentals" is really worth a listen. Let's just say it's a little indie/synth-pop piece that will always have a special place in my record collection. "Return..." is the archetype of geek-rock, with emotive songs that quietly lament computer crashes, and occasionally old girlfriends. Even if you can't personally relate to Matt Sharp's difficulties, you'll at least feel sorry for him by the end of the album. In gneral, the lyrics are intelligently simple and fun. The production here is notably low-key: the guitars sound fuzzed-out rather than loud or harsh, and they are generally low in the mix. The drums are often purposefully sloppy and jovially haphazard, bringing to mind Dylan's classic "Rainy Day Women #12 & 35." I'm a sucker for albums that play well all the way through, and the Rentals deliver in this category as well. There's really no filler here; I could try to tell you which are the "standout" tracks, but that would be a big waste of time. In short, this works really well as an album, not just a collection of singles. You might recognize "Friends of P," which got moderate radio play in the mid-nineties. Like I said, "Return of the Rentals" isn't some kind of operatic, overproduced opus, but it's quite an intelligent piece of music. Putting "Return..." on your stereo feels like hanging out with your friends on a Sunday afternoon."
Stands the test of time
Shawn St John | Houston, TX | 07/31/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This album is a pop gem--it still sounds as fresh, fun and catchy as ever. Sharp manages to mix strings and Moogs and sugar-coated girl-boy harmonies with indie rock instrumentation without a hint of irony or trendiness. The songs are catchy--but off-center enough that you never get tired of them. Sharp is a very talented man--a punk with a classic pop heart. Return of the Rentals rivals anything Weezer ever did, and stands as an important musical contribution of the 90's."
Howlinw | California, USA | 11/24/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"In the history of music, there are bands destined for greatness. "Important" bands, with that capital "I." They will create albums that are critically unassailable. They may be all but ignored in their own time, but their influence will permeate throughout musical subcultures and emerge as the driving force behind a new movement that will alter the cultural landscape decades later. People all around you will then claim that they have *always* been fans of these Important bands, and just didn't want to talk about it because they assumed that everybody knew it.
The Rentals aren't one of those bands.
Whew! Pressure's off. Time to have fun.
Which is exactly what they do. In spades. Nothing here is earth-shattering or particularly original. But that's not the point. It's a blast. Great choruses, harmonies, funny lyrics about nothing in particular. The bubblegum of our time. But that's not a bad thing.
The Rentals aren't going to be remembered as more than a side-act to Weezer. And perhaps that's for the best. Every generation has its "Blue Album," the one that everybody thinks is a masterpiece and everybody had a personal experience with back in high school. But there's also lots of little, obscure bands out there churning out perfectly good, fun music that will stick in your head for a bit, inspire vague feelings of nostalgia when heard a few years later, and may turn up on a 90s compilation put together by Rhino Records in ten years or so. Until then, enjoy this disc. That's what it's there for.