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Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, ‘That’s What’s Up’ – Song Review

Vagrant Records
Vagrant Records

There are some songs and some bands that you listen to and think, “Man, this would be a lot more fun to play than it is to listen to.” It’s not a bad thing. A lot of great music, from Ornette Coleman to Merzbow to the occasional Animal Collective track, strikes us this way.

Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros, with their cult/gospel/soul-folk good times ‘n’ warm rays vibe, jimmies this reaction better than they may want to.

Given, their breakout single, ‘Home,’ is an incredible track by just about anyone’s estimation. It’s a hard song to follow up. But with best intentions, new single ‘That’s What’s Up’ takes a long pull of cutesy, cheeky, “we wub each other” party punch from the Otis Redding and Carla Thomas and White Stripes ‘I Can Tell We’re Gonna Be Friends’ juicebox.

It’s a nicer energy than it is a good track. There’s some pretty cool, echoing guitar flicks, woodsy harmonies, a little off-the-hemp-cuff whistling for good measure, and, of course, tambourine — but ultimately nothing to get stuck in your head. Nothing to send you to the “whoa, I’ve gotta hear this again right now” button after the final chime dings.

That said, it sounds like the band had a blast laying this on record. And Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes have a contagious energy that’s approaching #based levels of hazy-eyed positivity. So there’s nothing really to dislike here. But, then again, there’s not much to be crazy about, either.

Listen to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeroes, ‘That’s What’s Up’

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6 out of 10 rating

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