Editors’ Notes It’s been five years since the Apples favored listeners with their delectable brand of pop-psych cotton candy, and in the interim songwriter Robert Schneider seems to have aged his inspirations a decade or so, from the Beatles and the Beach Boys to Todd Rundgren and ELO. Layered thick with overdubs and effects, bursting at the seams with vintage Vocoders, Mellotrons, handclaps, and backward guitars, New Magnetic Wonder swings to the other side of the sonic pendulum from the stripped-down, fuzz-and-feedback aesthetic of 2002’s Velocity of Sound. Supported by a cast of Elephant 6 friends and alums, including the elusive Jeff Mangum of Neutral Milk Hotel, Schneider packs the album full of 14 full-length songs and 12 short “link tracks” to knit the whole together. Heck, he even invented for the occasion a brand-new “non-Pythagorean musical scale,” whatever that means. One thing hasn’t changed: the melodies are just as sunny, hooky and irresistible as ever, even if the lyrics come off as blithely uninterested in depth. “And the world is made of energy/ And the world is electricity/ … And there’s a lot inside of you/ And there’s a lot inside of me,” Schneider sings in his helium-huffer tenor, adding, “It’s gonna be all right.” Absolutely. An overstuffed, tooth-achingly sweet pop confection, New Magnetic Wonder is nonetheless tons of fun — and a great excuse for summer to come back around.

SONG
Can You Feel It?
1
4:10
 
Skyway
2
2:40
 
Mellotron 1
3
0:33
 
Energy
4
3:30
 
Same Old Drag
5
3:21
 
Joanie Don't U Worry
6
0:46
 
Sunndal Song
7
3:31
 
Droplet
8
0:13
 
Play Tough
9
3:27
 
Sun Is Out
10
2:29
 
Non-Pythagorean Composition 1
11
0:30
 
Hello Lola
12
0:15
 
7 Stars
13
3:46
 
Mellotron 2
14
0:41
 
Sunday Sounds
15
2:59
 
Open Eyes
16
5:12
 
Crimson
17
0:17
 
Pre-Crimson
18
1:24
 
Vocoder Ba Ba
19
0:14
 
Radiation
20
3:14
 
Beautiful Machine Parts 1-2
21
2:36
 
Beautiful Machine Parts 3-4
22
4:58
 
My Pretend
23
0:42
 
Non-Pythagorean Composition 3
24
0:49
 

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