Elastica, The Menace (Atlantic): Five years after their last long-player, with Justine Frischmann no longer a fixture in British gossip magazines, this long-awaited effort from Elastica came and went without a hit single and with little in the way of acclaim — the reason being, all the right people didn't hear it. Instead of another shiny alterna-rock record, Elastica delivered an astonishingly authentic-sounding new-wave record, mixing spiky, spastic rock songs with hushed, keyboard-heavy pop songs. On The Menace, Elastica throw out crackling melodies with little regard for the listener. It's a swift, charismatic, completely unpretentious set, one which will probably alienate a lot of the group's original fans, if they hear it. Which is fine, as long as those who'd love this record actually get a chance to listen. — Anthony Carew

copyright (c) 2000, 2001 michael goldberg | design by elephantcloud