The Soft Pack - Strapped LP - Flamingo Edition (/300), a photo by Tim PopKid on Flickr.
I first heard of The Soft Pack back when they were still called The Muslims. They had opened for The Night Marchers on a few shows and had earned the praise of some West Coast friends. I picked up their LP, and just kept on buying their records. Through the band's name change and over the course of all of the records they've put out I have enjoyed the ride, but the band never quite captured the magic of the first LP in my opinion.
The same can be said for Strapped. It's good and the great songs are really, really great. But there's some 80s sounding filler on here that's not my cup of tea. Not to mention the production and recording is definitely more noticeable than their early stripped down affairs. This is the very definition of a good record. Nothing special, nothing bad, but a perfectly serviceable record to put on when you want a change of pace.
The Flamingo Edition was only sold on the Mexican Summer website. It comes gift wrapped in flamingo wrapping paper. It's actually a really cool idea and I don't know that the picture does it justice, but I am very happy I decided to buy this direct from the label. Plus, I got a bonus 7", but that's for another post.
11/19/12 Update: I don't really do this often, but I wanted to update this. The more I listen to this record the less I like it. I still contend that there are a handful of pretty good songs on here, but the filler ones I mentioned in my initial review, I flat out hate a lot of these songs now. Never a good sign when a record decays over time.
The Soft Pack - Strapped: