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The Leisure Experiment The Tiki Tones, Two Eleven Records 2000
1.il Vespa
2.Juicy
3.Topless Holiday
4.Blood & Sand
5.Green Bananas
6.Music to Watch Girls By

The Tiki Tones are a band out of California that probably sounds a lot like their name. Their first two albums had a sort of Polynesian flavor, but with The Leisure Experiment they move to a more loungey sound while keeping the instrumental "music to get smashed on girly drinks in your dorm room" sensibility.

The fairly lush production has a mere six tracks, but they all are filled with samples from old movies and a skilled sound you'd only find on albums like this one. It isn't exactly adventurous, but it is entertaining, and people who need new lounge music will probably really dig this.

Track six, "Music to Watch Girls By," is a cover and according to those that know better than us, it appeared in several movies. It's a very clean sounding track, like the entire album, and at times it may feel slightly too squeaky clean given that this is the sort of thing that should probably be playing in some pseudo-ironic seedy bar somewhere. Or a bowling alley. One of those.

There are some vocals in "Juicy," namely a newly added female vocalist repeating the title. Some samples from various Scott Metzger films are scattered through the album, giving the squeaky-clean music some slightly fuzzy dialogue snippets that really help flesh out the album's character. It's a great piece of mood music, or perhaps driving around music, and it comes in a great little digipak designed by the great Shag who, before becoming a sort of pop art icon, designed album covers for The Tiki Tones, Man or Astro-Man, Servotron, and many other bands you need to hear.

Despite the fact that the band dropped the whole Polynesian stage name trip for this album, it's still neat for what it is, and that's a great little lounge EP in its own right. Released in 2000, the band has seemingly moved on to greener pastures and members of the band are now in a trucker-themed act which we have yet to check out. If you can get the CD at a fair price, it's worth a few listens.

--Adam Pawlus
April 19, 2004

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