Pizzicato Five International Playboy and Playgirl Record

The Energiser bunny has got nothing on Shibuya-kei duo Yasuharu Konishi and Nomiya Maki. The manic pop pair’s new songs, "Concerto" and "Playboy Playgirl," are supercharged genre-surfing romps that keep going and going. However, the Pizzicato Five brain trust has also learned how to turn the intensity down a notch on its fourth American album, International Playboy and Playgirl Record. While there are still plenty of bubblegum hits and madcap lounge romps to keep the dance floor jumping, other tracks, including the heartfelt “I Hear A Symphony” and “Drinking Wine,” are well-crafted pop songs that recall ‘60s movie soundtracks. Pizzicato Five gets pensive and introspective with some soft-rock material that adds a bit of a Fifth Dimension to the decade-spanning sound. Contemplation a go-go. The new (well, actually, old) style suits these retro-hipsters well. (Matador)