Fountains of Wayne
is Brian Young
and Jody Porter.
Published: Mar 31st, 2007
Author: David Bauder
Source: The Showbuzz
Chris Collingwood and Adam Schlesinger of Fountains of Wayne are two of this generation's best pop-rock composers, able to wed finely detailed stories of misguided lives with sharp melodies. It was mostly a secret among critics until "Stacy's Mom" broke through in 2003. That video with Rachel Hunter certainly didn't hurt.
Their ability to draw portraits in song is in full flower here, from the randy TV anchor team in the title cut to the disconnected singles in "Someone to Love." The song "New Routine" is particularly strong, with a waitress leading a chain of people convinced their lives would be better if they just moved away. And the early favorites for best opening line and most inspired rhyme in a song this year: "Well, it was Saturday night, I was sitting in the kitchen, checking out the women on Spanish television."
So why is this a three-star album instead of a four-star?
The Fountains have always had a taste for cheese, but they pile on the 1980s-era synthesizers a bit too thick here. There are tiny signs of being off their game: "Someone to Love" would have driven its point home more effectively without the repetitive outro.
Most importantly, the Fountains at their best not only show you the heart of their characters, but have them touch your heart, too. That doesn't happen enough here, unfortunately.