Review: Oneida – Happy New Year

Originally published in Punk Planet November/December 2006

Genres merrily collide on this eclectic and carefully crafted 11-song disc, which marks the 100th release for Bloomington’s Jagjaguwar label.

Melancholy jaunts bleed into electronic cut-ups. Frenetic dancehall exercises rub elbows with dissonant pseudo-acoustic ballads. Poppy bridges lead listeners toward a closing requiem fleshed out with spare keyboard/piano motifs and horror-house interjections.

Simply put, it’s exactly what you’d expect from these Brooklyn vets, who shine brightest when the sometimes-mutated forms they adopt as their own are predictably unpredictable.

There are threads running through the disc, of course, but the group’s latest full-length may be better experienced as a sequence of disjointed moments, each lovingly composed and welcoming in its defiance of expectations.

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