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Three or Four Great Songs in One

Silversun Pickups, named for a Los Angeles liquor store, sounds like a sort of alternate-universe Smashing Pumpkins: Though Billy Corgan and company enjoyed tremendous success during the band's existence, they strayed wildly from the punchy power of Gish. Had the group kept its ambitions in check on subsequent albums, its members would be living in much smaller houses, but their records would probably sound an awful lot like Silversun Pickups' debut disc, Carnavas.

From the tone of the vocals to the slow-then-fast screaming to the bursts of distortion, Carnavas seems destined to draw comparisons, but there's more to it than that. On an album full of epic tracks, "Lazy Eye" is the powerhouse, mixing Pumpkins-esque bombast with the complexity and ambitious oddness of Slint. At times, the song seems to move so quickly that Brian Aubert's vocals can barely keep up: Awash in noisy guitar effects and driven by an indelible hook, "Lazy Eye" sounds like three or four great songs mixed together into one.

Listen to yesterday's 'Song of the Day.'

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John Richards
John Richards is the host and producer of The Morning Show with John on 90.3 FM KEXP Seattle, and online at He is also KEXP's assistant program director.