The Beta Band

The Beta Band

Hot Shots II

Astralwerks

Whew. What a not-there album. The current poster-boys of instantly hip street-cred for Rolling Stone and Spin staffers alike, The Beta Band stumble along half-asleep • and that’s being much too kind • with an album, Hot Shots II, that’s most definitely phoned-in and, even more definitely, bound to be hailed by upper-middle-class white college kids as the second coming of Christ (next to any new Radiohead output, natch). Dunno what it was about the preceding The Three EPs, or even still, what’s happened in the interim, but I vaguely remember hearing my old roommate’s copy of the record, kinda thinking it sounded like three disparate bands playing at any given moment, or usually, at the same time, and drunkenly, at that. With Hot Shots II, however, we’re mainly given listless (and not even enjoyably so) folk-hop, much less a pulse, save for “Wow” • and that’s the album closer, for fuck’s sake. To waste any more breath on undoubtedly the most over-hyped band around would be a professional disservice.

Astralwerks Records, 104 W. 29th St., 4th Floor, New York, NY 10001; http://www.astralwerks.com

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