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Since they weren’t yet willing to admit that they were really just a pop band (and maybe they never did, and maybe that was their problem), the only song that sounds truly competent is “About A Girl.” That one breezes along with a catchy simplicity in the manner of Kurt’s best work; cf. “Sliver,” “On A Plain,” “Drain You.” Otherwise, the bland, lifeless riffs on this album go nowhere, slowly. It sounds like a band jamming through non-material, trying to find a spark. “School” is the best of the lot, though its two-note riff and “No recess!” chorus were much more effective live, with a better drummer; “Negative Creep” is almost the same riff, the same song with already diminishing returns. When they try to get weird (“Floyd The Barber”, “Paper Cuts”), they’re even less interesting. You might like this album if you try hard enough though, just like lots of folks did, retroactively.

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