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The Jessica Fletchers

Less Sophistication (Rainbow Quartz)

Hand claps, cowbells, sassy horns and "Jumping Jack Flash" rhythms make Less Sophistication the best Summer of Love record not penned by mop-topped limeys in the '60s. Hailing from the American-garage-rock capital of Scandinavia, the Jessica Fletchers lean heavily on the white-boy soul of the Zombies but aren't afraid to toss in a few snarky Supertramp change-ups if they happen to strike a funny, over-the-top chord. And the Beach Boys/Hollies harmonies get hot-welded to a driving blues anchor, which prevents some of their psychedelic threads from trailing off into the Age of Aquarius. I can't remember the last time a record so instantly stuck to the roof of my mouth, every song a beach-blanket party anthem riding a sweet lick.

 
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