in Review

The Both – The Both

Keeping with the theme of music that’s loosely connected to Tom Scharpling’s The Best Show, here’s a project I first became aware of on the second-to-last episode of The Best Show On WFMU last year, when Ted Leo and Aimee Mann gave the show a touching musical send-off.  Now, I could sit here and tell you about how this album-length collaboration meshes Ted Leo and Aimee Mann’s respective styles, but honestly I’ve had very little exposure to Aimee Mann’s solo career, though I’ve been a big Ted Leo fan for a while now.  What I can tell you is that The Both is a perfectly pleasant little slice of pop-rock, some of which can tend to blur together a bit, though the album certainly isn’t without its stand-outs like singles “Milwaukee” and “Volunteers Of America”.  Yet despite being just fine with this album, I do kind of wish I’d made an attempt to see them live, since from the KEXP session I heard them do at Bumbershoot, these two have some of the best onstage banter I’ve ever heard.  Which maybe shouldn’t come as a surprise, since they after all learned from one of the masters of wryly funny smalltalk (Come on, Tom.  Just bring back The Best Show already!)