Review: The Telephone Numbers – The Ballad of Doug

San Francisco’s The Telephone Numbers, are the recording vehicle for Thomas Rubenstein‘s charming and enganging jangle pop composistions. On The Ballad of Doug which was released in June on Paisly Shirt Records Rubenstien is joined by a full cast of musicians including Glenn Donaldson of The Reds, Pinks, & Purples who provides various instrumentation as well as mixing the album. However, the spotlight is firmly focused on The Telepohone Numbers’creative leader who has a knack for creating concise and intelligent guitar driven pop songs with anbundacne of razor harp hooks. By the end of the albums openner, You’re Nowhere I was hard pressed not to sing along. There’s something familiar yet competely unique at work with the songs chiming guitars chords and bouyant melodies even though I was hearing it for the first time. Elsewhere, on Pictures of Lee the gently strummed guitars and varied instrumentation provides a fondation for the albums most compelling and addicitve track. I don’t think I’ve managed to make through the album without playing this song 3-4 times in a row. Come to think of it with a running time of just 33 minutes it’s easy to play The Ballad of Doug over and over. The Telephone Numbers have delivered one of the years most enjoyable albums of the year, filled with subbtle melodies with nod to classic jangle pop touchstones.

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