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Classic Album Review: Teenage Fanclub & Jad Fair | Words of Wisdom & Hope

The Scottish power-popsters & the indie primitive bring out the best in each other.


This came out in 2002 – or at least that’s when I got it. Here’s what I said about it back then (with some minor editing):


Who: The unlikeliest pop pairing of the year — commercial Scottish power-popsters Teenage Fanclub and quirky indie-pop primitive Jad Fair of Half Japanese.

What: Also the unlikeliest pop gem of the year — a dozen-song set that brings out the best in both acts. Teenage Fanclub, with their shimmering, smooth sound and tight delivery, are a better backing band than Fair has had for years, while his childish melodies and off-kilter tunes about love and monsters gives the band an edge and distinctiveness they’ve long been lacking.
Highlights: As if this inspired teaming weren’t enough of an indie-pop all-star summit, the delicious Near to You also features the breathy vocals of Katrina Mitchell of The Pastels.
Musical Formula: Matthew Sweet ÷ Velvet Underground + Fangoria + Archie Comics.
Final Verdict: You’ll find it hard to believe these guys got together, but you’ll be glad they did.