Maritime We, the Vehicles

Following the break-up of the Promise Ring, Davey von Bohlen and Dan Didier decided it was time to get their mature rock on. Forming the English with ex-Dismemberment Plan bassist Eric Axelson, the group were signed to and then dropped by Anti, changed their name, self-released an EP, and finally released a full-length, Glass Floor in 2004. The record received mixed reviews, with some claiming it was boring and safe, while others declared it understated and powerful. Two years later, We, the Vehicles is not going to change any opinions. Von Bohlen’s earnest vocal style and honest songwriting is still here in all its lovingly flawed glory, and the Burt Bacharach-like arrangements of songs like "People, the Vehicles” are guaranteed to alienate those who haven’t liked the Promise Ring since 30 Degrees to Everywhere. That said, listeners approaching this record without expecting to hear anything like Emergency & I just might enjoy the upbeat, simplistic tunefulness of songs like "Parade of Punk Rock T-Shirts” or "German Engineering.” It’s pop music, and your mom might like it, but it’s still really good. (Flameshovel)