Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Clap Your Hands Say Yeah: Some Loud Thunder [clapyourhandssayyeah.com, 2007]
They weren't as extraordinary as people said then, so why believe they're as ordinary as people say now? Not that Alec Ounsworth knew the distortion he laid on the first track--which evokes a cracked ceramic cartridge, kids--would off-put so spectacularly. But though I hated the effect at first, now it makes me chuckle--a cheeky sonic joke that doesn't diminish the excellent title song into which it's integrated any more than subtler lo-fi hurts "Emily Jean Stock" right after. The debut was a groove album that moved along smartly before climaxing on a crest. This is a song album that sags in the middle. Groove to song--if you wanted, you could even call that progress. A-