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RECORD RACK

Feelies Relax

August 31, 1986|KRISTINE McKENNA

"THE GOOD EARTH." The Feelies. Coyote. Like the Meat Puppets, the Feelies make laid-back guitar music with a spacey edge--new-wave folk music for yuppies. The Feelies are relatively new to this turf, having recently revamped their identity as an aggressively arty group of the brainy nerd variety. Formed six years ago by guitarists Glenn Mercer and Bill Million, the group has undergone extensive personnel changes, but its present incarnation is its most commercial to date. Where they once relied on the central gimmick of playing all their songs at an insanely fast tempo, they've now relaxed into a lyrical groove evocative of R.E.M. As with R.E.M., the Feelies' lyrics come across as a softly mumbled blur, thus placing the emphasis on the interplay between instruments. Though it's hardly a ground-breaking work, "The Good Earth" exerts a peculiar charm that increases with repeated listening.

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