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Monster Bobby, ‘Gaps’ (Hypnote)

Robert Barry, guitarist for the Pipettes — and reportedly the British girl group’s mastermind — prefers a more intimate approach on his sneakily brilliant solo debut. His handmade pop scuffs up tender melodies and lonelyguy vocals with synth fuzz and budget electronic beats, turning potential sentimental junk into moving vignettes. The peppy “Blah Blah Blah (Give Up)” could be a stripped-down Pipettes song, while “Let’s Check Into a Hospital Together” deflects angst with quippy lyrics. But more wistful episodes such as “I Heard You Moved Away” acknowledge the crushing melancholy that gives the album its tatty soul.

Now Hear This:Monster Bobby – “Beyond the Reach of Arms” DOWNLOAD MP3