The Austin Chronicle

Texas Platters

Reviewed by Audra Schroeder, February 15, 2008, Music

School Police

II (Non)

Some of the instruments listed on School Police's II include hair iron, tambourine, scream, and Speak & Spell. This throw-it-all-against-the-wall approach drives the Austin quartet's instrumental musical chairs. Featuring vocals from members of the Hunnies and Belaire, II packs 27 songs into the group's third album, integrating a handful of genres. A glowing "Sunburn" veers between pop and reggae ("My bathing suit's running for the Senate"), evolving from SP's dub-infused debut, Grow Yr Hair; "Wooden Trampoline" lilts with breezy conga and a whistling solo; and "On the River (She Was Born)" creeps slowly up the embankment through a shudder of reverb. Elsewhere, songs pick up speed on "Kickapoo," on which singer Wakey Share channels Stephen Malkmus, and the pop-punk "Dirty Razorblade." "Time Can" and "Baby Panther" bring it all back around to sweet acoustic melodies. For 27 songs, most of it sticks.


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