I adored the Davenports’ superb debut and waited for its follow up with great anticipation and expectation. Glad to report, there’s no disappointment here. If nothing else whilst melodic sensibilities remain vital as before, Scott Klass (who is the Davenports) seems to have honed his lyric writing in the interim period.
The title track is an excellent example: sounding like the Beach Boys (circa Friends) singing tongue-in-cheek about um…porn. To wit, “The mother of all DVDs/My seven sacred speakers and my work-related expertise/Bring to life their body-sandwich/Multi-angle marvels make the shots recycled stay fresh for me.” Spot-on commentary!
Or how about the fawning “Annette O’Toole,” where behind a straightforward jaunty pop tune, Klass croons – “Is Peter O your father?” Heh. Or maybe the McCartneyesque “A Deadhead’s Lament” with the sadly humorous “Got a shrine to you, got a spirit free/Got a flashback to keep me company tomorrow.”
The Davenports may get attention for Klass’s previous associations with Chris Collingswood but I’ll argue that it should be the other way around as the Fountains of Wayne boys so far haven’t been able to match the Davenports’ maturity and sophistication on both musical and lyrical fronts.
That said, every card-carrying power popper that thought that Welcome Interstate Managers was the album of last year should feel the same about Hi-Tech Lowlife in 2004. A+