Now we’re talking, in a return to form that has been a long time coming, They Might Be Giants (TMBG) has returned to the rock. I don’t know how they do it. After nearly 30 years, 15 studio albums 13 compilations, seven live albums and 18 EPs, the band continues to create fresh material without straying too far from their core sound.
Join Us is electrifying…get up out of your seats electrifying … while the lyrics continue to be clever and humorous. At the heart of the matter is infectious and catchy songwriting. John Flansburgh and John Linnell have outdone themselves on this album. The opener “Can’t Keep Johnny Down” is one of those tunes which stick in your head before the track is even over. You’ll carry it with you for days. Other standouts on this remarkable album are “Canajoharie,” “Cloisonné,” “When Will You Die” and my personal favorite “Judy is Your Viet Nam.”
I wish I had space to go into more detail about each of these songs. But, any fan of TMBG understands that their craft involves keeping their fans on their toes. Their songs are not cookie-cutter and, true to form, neither is this album. Rest assured, it’s enjoyable, it’s welcome and it deserves your attention. Hell, it’s so good that with the proper exposure it could garner them a Grammy; which would be their first since 1990s Flood. Let’s make it happen, people!