Cryptacize: Mythomania

By: Dennis Cook

Sky god hands reach down to earth to choke a cowboy on the cover of an album named for the clinical term for the compulsive need to embroider the truth, i.e. lying. It's a whole bunch going on before the needle finds the groove, and then the music begins like a Tijuana bar band in a blender before quickly giving way to a skipping jitter with a '60s radio kitten singer trying to find her way back to you. While recorded in a cabin near Yosemite last summer, Mythomania (released April 21 on Asthmatic Kitty Records) is a very modern specimen, full of seemingly incongruous intersections that sync up gracefully. Perhaps its woodland birthplace surfaces in a windy, upward reach and a certain remove from what the other kids are laying down in the city. Considerably more focused than their 2007 debut, Mythomania has an artful crackle worthy of their cool influences (Mancini, '60s girl groups, Dion, Queen, Joan Jett) without being hampered by them. Nothing about this album seems anything but Cryptacize's invention, a constantly shifting, unabashedly romantic bent that revels in what can be accomplished in about three minutes. This is a fetching cocktail mixed from the naked, unreasonable yearning of The Crystals' "He's A Rebel," the late night bonhomie of The Velvet Underground's "After Hours" and the perverse bounce of Brian Eno's Taking Tiger Mountain. That's clearly an oversimplification but it gives you some notion of the bouquet you'll experience if you imbibe this flavorful concoction.

[Published on: 5/16/09]

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