They Might Be Giants | South China Morning Post
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  • Feb 27, 2015
  • Updated: 12:41pm

They Might Be Giants

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 29 July, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 29 July, 2007, 12:00am

They Might Be Giants


The Else


(Zoe)


The dream looked like being over for They Might Be Giants.


The inspired, often bizarrely catchy pop that fuelled their self-titled debut back in 1986 had dwindled over 20 years into experiments in children's music and worse - patchy studio efforts bereft of their gloriously off-kilter flourishes.


An ageing and irrelevant band, it was thought, simply going through the motions. How wrong those naysayers were.


All it has taken is a little help from the Dust Brothers - the guys who in the 1990s put the funk into Beck, among others - and TMBG have bounced back with a selection of songs that can be counted among their best.


TMBG's mainstays John Linnell and John Flansburgh have returned to safe territory - combining their crazed lyrics with punchy pop- fused melodies. While things start slowly, it's when the Dust Brothers' signature horns start wailing that The Else lifts off.


Bee of the Bird of the Moth is a slice of manic genius, while The Withered Hope is the happiest 'sad' song you're ever likely to hear.


They even beef things up on Feign Amnesia - perhaps as close as TMBG have ever come to matching their seminal Don't Let's Start.


As always, the songs don't linger - most last about two minutes - and build to a final, superb, piece of nonsense. It's a song that's either about a band called the Mesopotamians, or a song that's actually about a bunch of Mesopotamians. Who knows - and who really cares?


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