Rhythm & Views

Baby Teeth

From the album art (lead singer and songwriter Abraham Levitan sitting at a bar with one hand over a beer, a cigarette in the other), you'd never guess that The Simp overflows with disco madness and David Bowie-style theatrics. And although the name Baby Teeth is just asking for bad metaphors (The Simp is an album you can really sink your teeth into! The na-na-nas on the title track are sharp! Baby Teeth really show their pearly whites on "The Birds Are Crying"!), The Simp deserves far better.

"Taste the Wine" sounds like Queen, if they had been from Alabama, and even though "Diaghalev Was Right" spells the Russian ballet dancer's name wrong, it's the best blues-rock song about a Russian ballet dancer I've ever heard. It might well be the only blues-rock song about a Russian ballet dancer I've ever heard. The opening riff of "Intolerable" sounds like "Thriller," but in a strangely exciting way, and if Ally McBeal were still on air, "Wolves" would be one of those songs she'd hear in her head when she's walking down the street after a long, crazy day of work: "Good girls don't play anymore / they don't dream all night and all day anymore / but they still cry."

Yes, all of those strings are actual strings, not synthesizers, and the same goes for all of those horns and "vaudevillian sound effects." "You're either on the swim team or you're not," sings Levitan on "Swim Team"; if we're gonna listen to music like this at practice, sign me up for the freestyle.

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