The Soundtrack of Our Lives, 'Communion' (Yep Roc)

Critical Mass
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by Steve Kandell

The album is having a hard enough time retaining its relevance as a medium, but the double album? It's been a symbol of unchecked impulses since Tusk (apologies to London Calling, Double Nickels on the Dime, and Warehouse: Songs and Stories). So it's a minor miracle that these Swedish vets' 24-song sixth album clocks in at 94 filler-free minutes, stuffed with late-'60s guitar romps ranging from slow-burn psychedelia (the Beta Band–like opener "Babel On," the Velvet Underground–indebted "Everything Beautiful Must Die") to up-tempo struts, and more deliberate mood pieces (the wave-your-arms-in-the-air finale, "The Passover").

Listen: "Flipside" (DOWNLOAD MP3)

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