an A.merican D.ream

Mexican Summer

Street: 02.26

Vietnam = Max Pain & the Groovies + The Flaming Lips + T. Rex

The sophomore album from this Brooklyn rock group is a wild ride, with dark, psychedelic tones festering throughout the record. At its best, you can settle down into the groove of certain songs, but the majority of the tracks tend to be misguided with no clear direction. The band’s frontman, Michael Gerner, doesn’t necessarily “sing” his obtuse lyrics, but, rather, tends to spew them in long winded phrases that you can only try to comprehend before another set begins. But despite the lack of cohesive thoughts, there are a few highlights. Midway through the album, the track “1.20.09” offers a groovy piano ballad, with a dark church organ blaring underneath as well. The tune “Flyin’” may be the best track on this album, as its upbeat tempo seems to keep the wheels on the track and in a steady motion. I don’t question the musical skillset of Gerner—it’s clear he has a knack for this shit, but after several years since VietNam’s last release, it seems like the band could have used some more time polishing the songs and making the record more connected overall. –Jory Carroll

Listen to an A.merican D.ream on Apple Music.