DUSTED MAGAZINE

Dusted Reviews

Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - Scared Famous

today features
reviews charts
labels writers
info donate

Search by Artist



Sign up here to receive weekly updates from Dusted


email address

Recent Reviews

Dusted Reviews


Artist: Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti

Album: Scared Famous

Label: Hall of Records

Review date: Feb. 5, 2008


Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti - "Passing the Petal 2 You" (Scared Famous)


Ariel Pink’s slipped from the aesthete’s radar lately. There’s no buzz-word about him anymore, and the overarching impression one gets is that people tired of his budget Hall & Oates symphonies and looked elsewhere for their soft pop nostalgia fix. There’s also a distinct lack of quality control to Pink’s last few albums, as though he’s throwing back catalogue against the wall to see if it splatters nicely. It’s a charge Mike Powell led in a recent review of Scared Famous for The Wire, which lamented “the sobering feeling that [Ariel Pink’s] music might actually be really, really terrible.”

But while Scared Famous isn’t amongst his best, there’s still plenty of pleasure to be found here. When he’s playing the Cure fan (“Why Can’t I Be Me?”), or coming on like yacht rock reinterpreted by the Legion Of Rock Stars (at least half the record), it’s pretty ordinary, with the usual flatulent synths and cheek-chops drums bobbing in a sea of tape fuzz. (He could really stand to lose that Chipmunk backing vocal, too.)

“Passing the Petal 2 You,” though, is gorgeous, with a vocal melody that trails the guitar rather like Mayo Thompson’s “Oyster Thins,” and “Inmates of Heartache,” for several spiky guitars and woozy harmonies, feels like Soft Machine’s “Dedicated to You but You Weren’t Listening” after guzzling Codeine.

Pink may have dropped the ball a little, but it’s wise to check your pre-determined cynicism. The kid has it in him to surprise you yet – even if he’s still dredging five-year-old cassette archives to feed the steadily depleting “masses."

By Jon Dale

Other Reviews of Ariel Pink's Haunted Graffiti

The Doldrums

Worn Copy

House Arrest

Lover Boy

Before Today

Mature Themes

Read More

View all articles by Jon Dale

Find out more about Hall of Records

©2002-2011 Dusted Magazine. All Rights Reserved.