Bikeride Morning Macumba

After having undergone a reinvention of sorts, California's indie-pop collective Bikeride is now teetering on the verge of following the pop orchestrations of Burt Bacharach, rather than say the Beach Boys. Ringleader Tony Carbone has not dismissed his interest in making the amiable and bouncy pop music. While opening track "Radio Ougadougou" may discover the Brazilian grooves of Os Mutantes, from there the Latin feel of the record, including the wonderfully colourful artwork, shies away in favour of a more traditional pop sound. "Fakin' Amnesia" (a track that has garnered interest from the GAP) is full of beans and remains to be the most colourful tune about artificial memory loss ever written. "Moonracing," the only thing close to within miles of melancholy, reaches areas of the Stones's Aftermath-era, whispering its way into a darker territory. The only downfalls of Morning Macumba are the lack of outside influences, which are explored at the beginning but not carried as comprehensively throughout, and that damn overload of hidden tracks, which Carbone has failed to learn does not excite the listener but only brings frustration when the 25 tracks turn out to be nothing but a damn disappointment. (Hidden Agenda)