that dog. ‎– Totally Crushed Out! (2020 vinyl reissue)

5 out of 5

Label: Third Man Records

Produced by: That Dog, Tom Grimley, Paul du Gré, Rob Cavallo

Essentially the opposite of my experience with the Retreat From the Sun reissue versus the CD: Totally Crushed Out!’s vinyl put out by Third Man Records might be the ideal way to experience what is, by my opinion, an inventive and exciting but uneven album.

The A- and B-sides put a split right where the album sort of shifts tracks from punkier / rockier stuff to more experimental, poppier works; the physical pause makes the transition a little less jarring. Plus, whereas Brad Wood’s bright and shiny work on Retreat didn’t really shine on warmer wax transfer, TCO!’s mixed bag of styles benefits from it – the raw edge of the tracks more befitting a vinyl hiss. (Not that there’s any surface sound here – just a different listening experience.) The album artwork; the concept of the love-and-loss “story” told by the songs – it all just fits the format better.

Retreat is fun to own on vinyl, but will get more listens from me on CD. Totally Crushed Out!, though, may have new life in my playlist via this reissue.