Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

The Ponys: Celebration Castle [In the Red, 2005]
Like so many unpretentious young bands-with-a-knack, the Ponys are assumed by their contemporaries to bring nothing new to the party even though their sound is theirs alone--an object lesson in the primacy of timbre. Their second album isn't quite as good as their first album because its hooks are slightly less inescapable, which you can blame on Steve Albini if you want. But the difference is slight, and other differences are positive: more momentum, the girls get to sing one, and the Richard Hell guy sounds as weedy as the Peter Perrett guy, hence more like himself. A-