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Mister Pop

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Mister Pop album cover
Are You Really On Drugs
In The Dreamlife You Need A Rubber Soul
Asleep In The Tunnel
Back In The Day
Moon Jumper
Factory Man
Simple Fix
All Those Notes
Album Information

Total Tracks: 10   Total Length: 34:24

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Douglas Wolk


Douglas Wolk writes about pop music and comic books for Time, the New York Times, Rolling Stone, Wired and elsewhere. He's the author of Reading Comics: How Gra...more »

The Clean, Mister Pop
2009 | Label: morr music / Morr Music GBR

The most reliably great band that's ever come out of New Zealand celebrated their 30th anniversary in 2008. They haven't been a group for 30 continuous years — their previous studio album, Getaway, came out in 2001 (although they've released three live albums since then) — but David Kilgour, Hamish Kilgour and Robert Scott reunite every few years and record some kind of report on where their unshakeable chemistry as a group is leading them.

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They Say All Music Guide

If the Clean were motivated by anything other than a seemingly pure love of music, Mister Pop would have been a very different album. Since the last time the band made a record, scores of new bands have discovered the awesome early work the Clean recorded back in the ’80s and have incorporated the raw, scratchy, and energetic feel of those records into their sound. The group could have easily tried to capitalize on its newfound icon status and made an album that harked back to its early years. No one would have blamed them for cashing in; nobody would have begrudged them a few minutes of near fame. Instead, the band — still the brothers Kilgour (David and Hamish) and Robert Scott — have made a laid-back, hazy, and thickly psychedelic album that sounds more like something the band might have made in the ’90s. This is not a bad thing at all, because while not as influential, they made very good albums during that era. The songs on Mister Pop range from dreamy pop (“Are You Really on Drugs?”) to instrumental motorik jams (“Moonjumper”) to folky meditations (“All Those Notes”) and back to strummy pop (“Back in the Day”). It also contains at least two songs that would make it on a mythical Best of the Clean LP: “In the Dream Life U Need a Rubber Soul,” a slice of modern pop so heavenly and sweet that it should be sent to Jeff Lynne as a lesson on how to make modern pop without over-sweetening; and the driving Krautrocker “Tensile,” which features some nice vocodered vocals and a little bit of the texture of their early records. Apart from these standout tracks, it’s a solid album that shows off the individual members’ songwriting skills and holds together very well as a display of smart and savvy modern pop. If you’re looking for the old Clean, you might be disappointed, but if you are looking for good Clean, Mister Pop will be just what you need. – Tim Sendra

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