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Cheap Girls - Giant Orange Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 7
Musicianship 7
Lyrics 7
Production 7
Creativity 7
Lasting Value 7
Reviewer Tilt 7
Final Verdict: 70%
Member Ratings
Vocals 7.15
Musicianship 7.1
Lyrics 6.9
Production 6.65
Creativity 6.95
Lasting Value 6.95
Reviewer Tilt 7.1
Average: 70%
Inside AP.net

Cheap Girls - Giant Orange

Reviewed by: Thomas Nassiff (02/29/12)
Cheap Girls - Giant Orange
Release Date: February 21, 2012
Record Label: Rise Records


Cheap Girls is, to no disappointing extent, a band that one should listen to when they are in the mood to listen to the type of music Cheap Girls plays. Now, don’t get all up in arms telling me how obvious of a statement that is. The point I’m making is that Cheap Girls does not play the type of music that I would like to listen to all day, every day. Even when they release a solid new record like Giant Orange, the ‘90s alt-rock can’t stick around for too long.

That lends itself nicely to a good point about Giant Orange: it’s a proper length. Standing at a stout 10 tracks and 35 minutes, it’s more or less the correct dose of Cheap Girls that one needs. And as the band has done on prior full-lengths Find Me A Drink Home and My Roaring ‘20s, they start the action with one of the best songs on the album. “Gone All Summer” is nothing short of your typical guitar-led college radio rock that Cheap Girls has perfected over the course of its career-so-far. It's probably one of the more straightforward, aggressive songs in the Cheap Girls catalog, too. First single “Ruby” embodies that identity to an even greater extent, and if it were 1998, Ian Graham’s incredibly consistent croon would be gracing local airwaves constantly.

One characteristic of Giant Orange that is largely a departure from previous Cheap Girls albums is the production. On their first release for Rise Records, the band chose to work with Tom (actually, I think they’re calling him “Tommy” now) Gabel from Against Me! Gabel is a good producer – the album sounds just fine, but the muddy production that provided the glue around the loose edges of My Roaring ‘20s is gone completely. That muddy-sounding production was, for old fans, a truly defining piece of Cheap Girls’ sound, so as weird as it is to say, the clear production doesn’t necessarily help Giant Orange’s cause.

That production does come in handy at times, though, like on the acoustic “Cored To Empty” and the loopy “Mercy-Go-‘Round.” The new sound helps Adam Aymor’s guitar noodling come through without much friction, and Ben Graham’s drums, as always, are rock solid. At its core, Giant Orange is probably Cheap Girls’ best batch of songs. You don’t need to look past the closing punch of “On/Off Switches” and “Pacer” to realize that these guys can still write a damn good pop-oriented, alt-rock laden tune. Giant Orange could very well be Cheap Girls’ best record.

Being displayed to a larger audience on Rise, the new production will help as first-time listeners find it easier to lend their ears to a style of music that isn’t exactly common these days. For older fans, like me personally, the new production styles don’t particularly lend themselves to the band’s original sound, making it more likely for me to revisit Find Me A Drink Home than Giant Orange. That being said, the best songs from this album are all but unforgettable, and there are a handful of tracks that will certainly survive the test of time.

7/10 - Good

System.

Recommended If You LikeLemuria, Tigers Jaw, stuff like that, college rock from a couple decades ago.
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Displaying posts 1 - 15 of 39.
09:47 AM on 02/29/12
#2
Thomas Nassiff
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disagree with most of the review
To me, the production is an on/off switch - no pun intended. If you like it, you like the record. I like the muddy production from the last two records more...listening to this one too many times in a row is undoable for me.
09:51 AM on 02/29/12
#3
Cody Nelson
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Why did this get two reviews?
09:54 AM on 02/29/12
#4
cshadows2887
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I was really confused by describing Aymor's guitarwork as "noodling." He does a very small amount of active lead playing. Let alone enough to be considered noodling.
09:55 AM on 02/29/12
#5
Thomas Nassiff
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Yeah I guess it just has to do with our fundamental feelings about the band. Not saying that I don't like the review, I just don't have the same feelings that you do
I get you.
Why did this get two reviews?
Staffs and contributors might review the same thing sometimes when there's confusion, I was signed up for this review months in advance and had no knowledge Chris was doing his until it went up. It's a new system so it's going to get some speed bumps but it'll get smoothed out.
09:56 AM on 02/29/12
#6
Holly HoX!
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Why did this get two reviews?

Contributing writers aren't considered "staff," so "actual" staff can review the same albums, essentially.
09:59 AM on 02/29/12
#7
brandon_260
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I feel like I dug this album a lot more. I'm still not into it as much as Roaring 20s, but I still really enjoy it.
11:31 AM on 02/29/12
#8
Jake Jenkins
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really painful first paragraph. really painful.
11:37 AM on 02/29/12
#9
cshadows2887
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I get you.

Staffs and contributors might review the same thing sometimes when there's confusion, I was signed up for this review months in advance and had no knowledge Chris was doing his until it went up. It's a new system so it's going to get some speed bumps but it'll get smoothed out.
Same here. Eda got me this a loooong time ago and I had zero idea you were doing it as well. Oh well. I don't think anyone ever suffered from being presented multiple viewpoints on a piece of art.
11:41 AM on 02/29/12
cubsml34
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Really enjoyed this album, but this is the first release I've listened to by this band.
01:01 PM on 02/29/12
Thomas Nassiff
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Same here. Eda got me this a loooong time ago and I had zero idea you were doing it as well. Oh well. I don't think anyone ever suffered from being presented multiple viewpoints on a piece of art.
Yeah, I sent her an email about checking the staff thread about stuff people are reviewing haha. It's no biggie at all in my mind
04:27 PM on 02/29/12
Lueda Alia
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Yeah, I sent her an email about checking the staff thread about stuff people are reviewing haha. It's no biggie at all in my mind
I always checked the staff thread before Jason told us that staff and contributors could review the same albums, so I didn't need to be reminded of anything.
04:50 PM on 02/29/12
Thomas Nassiff
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After this opening, I will never take another review of yours seriously again.
"Now, don’t get all up in arms telling me how obvious of a statement that is."
04:50 PM on 02/29/12
Thomas Nassiff
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I always checked the staff thread before Jason told us that staff and contributors could review the same albums, so I didn't need to be reminded of anything.
Like I said, it's not a big deal. Just seemed to be a lack of communication a little bit. Not a big deal.
04:52 PM on 02/29/12
Lueda Alia
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Like I said, it's not a big deal. Just seemed to be a lack of communication a little bit. Not a big deal.
There wasn't a lack of communication though, as I said. At least not on my part.
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