If imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then Campfire Cassettes’ new album, Raised Wrong, is flummery at a most indisputable level.
Just a few seconds into the album opener “Mabel,” a song about a woman whose fellatio skill is beyond reproach, it’s clear that songwriter Jonathan Buchanan is well-versed in the Kinks discography. The Kinks comparison becomes even more evident with the track “Queena Reseda,” which tells the same story as “Lola,” minus the charm. The other main source of inspiration appears to be Neutral Milk Hotel. But unlike Neutral Milk Hotel, Campfire Cassettes steer their dark subject matter in a comedic direction, leaving one to wonder if their aim is parody rather than sincerity.
Speaking of comedy, the album’s closer is an ode to Keegan-Michael Key, sung over what basically sounds like the “Friends” theme song. Campfire Cassettes may just be too cute for their own good.
Rating: 4 out of 12 cans of PBR!