Insanely prolific garage rocker Ty Segall could have been forgiven for leaving 2014 with only one record, especially since it was the sublime double LP Manipulator. However, he clearly couldn't break his multi-album-per-year streak, as here we are with $INGLE$ 2, a collection of B-sides and other non-album tracks from 2011-2013. While most of these tunes have been floating around the Internet for the past few years, it's still nice to hear them on an LP that functions as a cohesive record, even if it wasn't designed that way.
$INGLE$ 2 oscillates between distorted lo-fi rock and acoustic jangle in a way that's not jarring or confusing, with highlights from both sonic camps. On the softer side is "It's a Problem," a nice slice of fuzzy, jangly rock, and the Beatles-esque harmonies of acoustic ballad "For Those Who Weep." However, Segall hits a nice, raucous stride on the horn-bolstered "Fucked Up Motherfucker" and a joyous and squeaky rendition of Velvet Underground's "Femme Fatale," which is everything the original version isn't, and makes up for his cover of the Groundhogs cover "Cherry Red," which is just a pale facsimile of the original.
$INGLE$ 2 feels, if anything, like a companion to 2011's Goodbye Bread: fuzzy, sometimes grimy and with riffs that chug along at the perfect speed to be chilled but not lulling. It's a sweet spot that Segall has hit so well that it makes even a collection of B-sides a decent album. (Drag City)