November 16, 2006

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Whitey, The Light at the End of the Tunnel is a Train
Dim Mak Records, 2006

Like the Teddybears, Whitey carries a beer-bar-danceable message from Europe, but where Teddybears want (and do in fact own) the TV-commercial airwaves, these guys have scummier things up their raincoat sleeve, namely alt-disco sleaze tricked out with a grunge engine. Frequently spotted over the years opening for the diverse likes of Iggy, New Order and LCD Soundsystem, there's obviously something confounding going on here, but it's simple if you look. In this album's instance the band's Rosetta Stone is found at the #9 track ("Non Stop"), wherein the buzz-droning "Hurdy Gurdy Man" guitars of someone like, say, Donovan Leitch joins the sublimated vocal lines of, say, Donovan Leitch, i.e. we're in cyber-60s land with Headman or some such nu-disco sludge-meister acting as tour guide, occasionally stopping to take in aggravatingly catchy sundries punctuated with what sounds like Pizza Bites cooking on the amp tubes powering a Talking Heads guitar ("In the Limelight") or Grandaddy having a play date with Kraftwerk ("Leave Them All Behind"). B+
Eric W. Saeger