Super Furry Animals Phantom Power (Beggars Group) Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNN
When Super Furry Animals' new Phantom Power disc was leaked to the Net a full four months before its official release, spies in the recording studio and overeager industry types were naturally suspected. A more likely source was the band itself. Unlike the immediate psych payoff of the Furries' Rings Around The World, Phantom Power (which oddly shares a title with a Tragically Hip record) takes its time to grow on you. The Welsh crew's typically twisted pop hooks remain, but stripped of the extravagant production on Rings. There's a decidedly more understated, at times pastoral, glide to songs like Liberty Belle, Father Father and Venus And Serena. Initially, a dreamy ballad like Sex, War And Robots can come off sounding cold. Four months on, it sounds a gem.