No. 2 – You Might Be Right

3 out of 5

Label: Jealous Butcher Records

Produced by: Joanna Bolme

Man, what an unexpected return. Two fantastic, edgy pop-rock albums and then, damn, I dunno what happened to Neil Gust and No. 2, but he packed up his songwriting chops and went back to the real world for a while. Approximately a million (or twenty-ish) years later, here’s the band back with Gust’s gorgeously bright vocals and sharp, direct lyrics; Paul Pulvirenti’s punchy drums; Gilly Ann Hanner’s bouncy bass and harmonies… And, y’know, the songs are alright. We hit both sides of the No. 2 style: a rocker on the A-side, and something softer and more emotive on the B-side. They’re both good, and they both surely sound like No. 2, but they’re not quite up to the better singles from either of their albums.

Hopefully these are just a warmup for something more. Should they prove to be the last we hear from No. 2, or perhaps one dribble until another 20 years later, they’re not quite must haves, but would sound exactly fitting on a playlist with their other releases.