Destroy Rock & Roll
When Myles MacInnes was growing up on the remote Scottish Isle of Skye, one radio station beamed in what>"/>
Destroy Rock & Roll
When Myles MacInnes was growing up on the remote Scottish Isle of Skye, one radio station beamed in what the 26-year-old producer remembers as "soft rock," which accounts for the nostalgia hangover of Destroy, released in America this month after a two-year reign abroad. This edition—including a Tom Neville remix of the anthemic title track and "Dr. Pressure," a mash-up of Miami Sound Machine's "Dr. Beat" and Mylo's own "Drop the Pressure"—feels longer and more wistful (note the synth vamp from "Bette Davis Eyes" on banger "In My Arms") than it should. Mylo desexes Prince's "Kiss" in "Guilty of Love," a song so cutesy it could've soundtracked the Troop Beverly Hills scene where the girls sell cookies to the lapsed and Spandexed outside of Jane Fonda's Workout. But Destroy is less ridiculous than it sounds, thanks to MacInnes' gift for thieving from modern music, too. It's striking how similar "Valley of the Dolls" is to Röyksopp's "Eple," down to their acoustic flourishes and 3:51 lengths. The schaffel beat of "Musclecar Reform" points to the Get Physical Records–style techno MacInnes spins, as well as the trash-culture surveys of Felix Da Housecat. Do Mylo's 190,000 U.K. worshippers care that he calls his G4 compositions "general crimes against taste"? They're either the least discriminating or most fun audience on earth—message board praise typically comes from those who "don't usually like this electro-house, or whatever it is," which is the key to Destroy's success: It's here for those that weren't there. Nobody else really wants to party with Primitive Love anymore, do they? RACHEL SHIMP
The big news is that Chan Marshall hired three cool, old Memphis R&B cats to record with; the bigger news is that no one really cares who Chan Marshall's backing band is. Nobody—none of her fans anyway—cares if Chan Marshall even has a backing band. Fans don't even care that she robs them of 20 bucks every time she comes to town, so long as—on record at least—she keeps sliding that thick, velvet voice of hers over stories that feel honest enough to live in. Her latest includes some stunning songs. Good thing; she needs them in order to stay within our good graces, because the album also has its share of troublingly benign clunkers. "Could We" could be a Michael Bolton song. Horns and guitar call out to each other and answer back all too safely, and Marshall's phrasing matches their sticky, sweet simplicity. The cloying "Islands," which is only a minute and half long, feels like a half-finished caricature. "After All" is a kicked-back ragtime lament made goofy with whistling Dixie asides. On these tracks, unfortunately, Marshall's venerable backing band sounds like any old bunch of workaday studio players. Good thing then that "Hate" is sparse and dark, that "Lived in Bars" has real soul, and that "Love and Communication," with its short, stabbing R&B notes and a hardened, tough rhythm, is a true match of Memphis' and Marshall's wits. She may disappoint you live, but because of songs like that one, you'll forgive her. LAURA CASSIDY
Has it really been that long since the Sea and Cake's One Bedroom? Three years are three too many for fans of their airy pop experiments, though they never have to wait long to subsidize their collections with side-project material. Released slightly before Sea and Cake leader Sam Prekop's Who's Your New Professor (which Prewitt played on) a year ago, Prewitt's Wilderness is his fourth solo album, and the most delicately nuanced yet. Compared with his bandmate's album, Wilderness is less a coup for Sea and Cake fans needing a bump of coolly energetic jazz and more a '70s-hued folk confessional, with Prewitt's lyrics like an open diary—sometimes achingly on point, sometimes embarrassing. Exploring somber situations like the loss of his father ("O, KY") and romantic disenchantment, Wilderness' moody reflection communicates best on songs like "Think Again," where Prewitt sings, "Feeling that there's something wrong with your days and nights/Love's evaded you/Now you're gonna wreck it all like you did, like you do/You continue to." The song's slide guitar embellishments, like simple bell tones on "O, Lord" and string crescendos that bring hummable hooks to duller songs, show the extent of Prewitt's multi-instrumentalism, creating a density that occasionally threatens to overwhelm a thinly whispered take. With so much sorrow on display, Prewitt, a freelance illustrator and the creator of the comic Sof' Boy, classily nods to the new and improved phase of his life with a cover drawing of his wife, amalgamated from various photographs, letting us see as well as hear his aesthetic of easygoing elegance. RACHEL SHIMP
Archer Prewitt plays the Crocodile Cafe with Irving and the M's at 9 p.m. Sat., Feb. 18. $10 adv.