After a five-year absence, Apples in Stereo have returned with a big comeback album. Robert Schneider’s songs have always been influenced by the pop aesthetic of The Beach Boys and ELO. Tthis DIY approach to those sounds are what made the Elephant Six so much fun to listen to. New Magnetic Wonder offers the listener a catchy, bouncy pop sound with all the modern electronica influences and techniques. The album starts out with the defiant “Can you Feel it?” a really nice guitar driven number, that then leads into “Skyway” another Apples’ classic. The Rundgren-styled keyboard-based pop of “Same Old Drag,” has a fantastic groove and ends much too soon. There is a bit too much vocoder and experimental tracks here that throws off the albums pacing. In fact I noticed alot of songs almost seem cut off. When we get to “Mellotron 2” the tone of the album begins to change. “Sunndal Song” and “Sunday Sounds” both sung by drummer Hilarie Sidney are also highlights that would be very comfortable on an Ivy album. It is unfortunate I hear she is no longer part of the band at this time. By the time we get to “Beautiful Machine Parts 3-4” the album resembles some emo-core band, like Taking back Sunday. Overall, The Apples in Stereo have always been one of the most talented bands in indie power pop. Here the tradition continues. Rather than post tracks, I posted the video “Energy” below. You can get this album at emusic and you have no excuses.
Want to see another Apples in Stereo video? Listen to “Same Old Drag”