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Several Hundred People

Several Hundred People

It’s hard not to have flashbacks of In the Aeroplane Over the Sea. Besides Lee Troutman’s tenor, similar to that of Neutral Milk Hotel’s Jeff Mangum, the production carries a like-minded, stripped-down complexity NMH was hailed for, without all of the indulgent musical explosions. Even the artwork vaguely resembles the deco-style paintings used for the cover art to NMH’s masterpiece. “My Girl is Crazy” is a beautifully meandering ballad that weaves its way through a musical tapestry with precision. And the electric piano intro on “The Years Gone By” plays an innocent game of musical hide-and-seek with the timbre of Lee’s wavering vocals. However, by the refrain, his voice has been plundered of all sweetness and left ravaged with earnestness, yet the music behind him hardly seems to notice the change at all.