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(Absolutely Kosher)

Talk about somewhat confusing album-opening songs. On Velodrome, Eltro slogs into the feedback heavy "Some Vital Function," leading the listener to believe that they might just try to pull off the next incarnation of Slowdive. With swirling guitars and keyboards and dreamy vocals layed down on top of all that by Diana Nicoletti, it's woozy and nice.

Then, just as you've gotten used to it, the song fades out and the group breaks into something quite a bit different. "Say It" is more pop-leaning electronic fueled track that has just the right amount of blistering guitar in places to not be dismissed as something lightweight. Really, that's the group too. This four-piece out of Philadelphia takes several different sounds and mixes them every so slightly into something that's very listenable without being derivative. There are bits of trip-hop, shoegazer, space age pop, and even a touch of new wave.

After those initial two tracks, the group drops off again into something slightly more seductive. With some syrupy keyboards and slight percussion taking the lead, singer Nicoletti harmonizes with Jorge Sandrini to give the track a strangely charged sexy energy. The next track "Three Gorges, Damn," keeps the same sort of feel with a feel that is heavy on the electronics, and although it sounds a bit like something from Broadcasts' The Noise Made By People, the chiming little track still has plenty of freshness.

The group tries even more things musically on the disc, and although they don't all succeed completely (the drum and bass rhythm on "Vera Wang" is a bit distracting and doesn't really add anything to the track), most of the tracks are still very solid, even when the electronics take more of a backseat to guitars. Whereas earlier tracks like the ones mentioned above work well with more electronics and guitars and bass adding subtle elements, tracks like "Escaping Fistland" and "Before" work just as well the other way around. Overall, it's a great second release for the group, as well as another excellent disc on the smaller Absolutely Kosher label.

Rating: 7