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Friday, Nov. 17, 2006


HiGE "Peanuts Forever"

It's funny how the Japanese are nowadays often better at U.S. indie than Americans. While most of the world's worshippers at the Nirvana/Pixies/Pavement shrine forget those bands' skewed wit and take themselves far too seriously, in Japan the weirdness thrives.

HiGE are one such band, fusing Nirvana's poppy bass lines, Pixies' sharp guitar hooks and Pavement's sloppy edge to form a solid, entertaining record. Opener "Mr America" also echoes Cobain faves The Vaselines, all singalong stomp and sunshine melody. Best of all, HiGE imbue their album with an offbeat sense of humor. The inlay sees band leader Hisashi Suto wearing four pairs of sunglasses on his bonce; the lurching "Neanderthal Punks F**k Off!" could win prizes for its title alone; and the lyrics on a song about lunchtime will tickle just about anyone. Oh, and the CD comes with a free stick-on mustache, for those of us without any hige of our own. Very thoughtful.

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