Pop Unknown If Arsenic Fails, Try Algebra

Austin, TX's Pop Unknown follow up their sparkling debut EP, Summer Season Kills, with this even more stunning full-length release. The quintet, which features three members playing guitar combine thick anthemic rock with delicate pop and ultra-melodic vocal harmonies to create a lush, swirling record filled with boundless energy. They easily shift from Lemonheads alterna-rock ("Head in the Sand") to tender pseudo ballads ("Oh, Kay" and "Lonely Here With Me") to the kind of dense shoegazing anthems ("Fallen Star") that would make Swervedriver second-guess themselves. Not since April Wine and Lynyrd Skynyrd have three guitars been slung so effectively and with such glorious abandon. Oh yah, the album title is also an early contender for best of the year. (Deep Elm)