The Apes Oddeyesee

[Frenchkiss; 2003]

Rating: 3.5/5

Styles: grunge metal, jungle rock, pagan punk
Others: Black Sabbath, Le Tigre, Les Georges Leningrad, Experimental Dental School

The Apes, a bass + drums + keyboards/organs/Moog with some singin', are on Frenchkiss Records for a reason: they sound a lot like Les Savy Fav. There's some organ going most of the time, and it's nice when the instrument comes into its own, but the Apes are at their best when they drop the ridiculousness of this concept album and just rock ("Aboard the Ark"), using their keyboards to riff around instead of blanket the proceedings. On much of the rest of this album, I find myself wondering, "Why don't they just speed things up a little?"  It sounds much better when the band does so, and while I'm certain that their collective tongue is firmly in cheek throughout, the listener simply isn't let in on the fun on many of the "moodier" pieces. Sure, you can strut, but do you have to make this such a drag? The Apes deserve credit for experimentation and not simply making a Les Savy Fav album, but they should look to their mentors for guidance in the craft of putting together an album that's weird, sure, but at the root simply fun. Oddeyesee is about 40% fun, but it's certainly interesting from its first seconds to the closing of "Drop the Bomb!" Second-hand find? Cha!

1. Intro
2. Imagik
3. Roll Call
4. Aboard the Ark
5. Children of Brainbow N Brainbro
6. How You Like Me Now
7. Gemini Butterfly
8. While Majestic Ape Sleeps
9. Forest of Confusion
10. Big Fog
11. Myops Coin Ops
12. Crystal Coco-Tech
13. Wor Wiz
14. Wor Wiz's Modern Problems
15. Drop the Bomb¡!