The mixtape has long been the tipsters calling card. Hear me now, believe me later. Truck hat enthusiasts Grandaddy have put forth their attempt at turning peeps on to some deeper cuts in the form of singer Jason Lytle's Below The Radio release. Kind of reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where Jerry falls for Janeane Garofalo because she is just like him, his female equal. Seems most of the bands on this mix are Diet and Junior versions of Grandaddy. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, after all. The liner notes provide the inspiration behind each selection. Pretty cool.
I counter, track by track, with my thoughts for the record. Track one is Beck. Quality but does Jason like heart-broken, melancholy millionaires swirling to harpsichords? Beulah is like an updated Brady Bunch track in the sense it's both catchy and simple. Somewhere in there is a compliment. The plodding Earlimart highlight was it's cello. The poppiest of the tracks, Snow Patrol grows on you like moss on the north side of a tree. Goldenboy is in need of a high note he can hit. Nice retro organ jam, though. Giant Sand is Nick Cave singing to Linus from Charlie Brown. I suggest you skip both Fruit Bats and Home, or at least do not operate heavy machinery. Jackpot immediately stands out for its more throbbing sound, it's the first track that does not sound like a Grandaddy b-side. The Handsome Family get the Brain Wilson/Beach Boys vibe going big-time, the annunciation is spot on. Watch out if his publisher's find out. Little Wings? Singing lessons, bro. Pavement is what it is. Blonde Redhead is the first and only female voice on the compilation. Anything we should know about, Jason? Virgil Shaw is open mic, Anywheresville, USA. Finally we get to the band of the hour. The last track is "Nature Anthem" by Grandaddy. A "This Land Is Your Land" Woody Guthrie-esque ditty with a questionable rhyming "mountain" with "mountain" pattern. The children's choir is a bit like a Coca-cola ad but it's a nice end to an overall sweet record.