Four Minute Mile
"The Plastic Chapter"

(Fake Chapter Records 2003)Four Minute Mile - The Plastic Chapter

On Four Minute Mile's newest EP, "The Plastic Chapter," the band offer all the easy rock infused with melodic choruses that you can handle and even tip their hat to Dexy's Midnight Runner's "“ a move that also, unfortunately, ages them and most of the rest of us.

With almost whiny vocals on their almost pop punk songs, Four Minute Mile begin "The Plastic Chapter" on an OK foot, with its relaxed mid tempo and straightforward arrangement "I Wonder" seems oriented at a radio friendly audience. Things get more interesting by means of the similar but more likable "Every Time," with its distorted guitar, and the more melodic and memorable "Everybody Runs." As the EP progresses, not only do the songs seem to get better but the music does too. Relying more on riffs, even the simple ones compliment, like on "Local Rock Star" and the rather good "One Thousand Galaxies" (whose chorus reminds of The Mindbender's "Groovy Kind of Love"). "No we don't know "˜Come On, Eileen'/Welcome to our cover scene," singer/guitarist/keyboardist Kyle Campbell sings in "Local Rock Star," among other quaint observations of being a neighborhood personality.

Leading off with strong drumming, although somewhat subdued, on "Anywhere Is Better" the band slow for dreamy choruses and accelerate for verses and a rather good instrumental break. Getting slow and melodic for the closer, "Never Been to LA," the EP's stand out track, allows for the band to finish on a high note even as Campbell pines "All my life, yeah, I wanted it so bad/I took everything cause I wanted it so bad/Twenty thousand dead cause I wanted it so bad/I've never been to LA."

Four Minute Mile seem to be restraining themselves on "The Plastic Chapter." The songs show such promise -- like "Never Been to LA" and instrumental bits of "Anywhere Is Better," for starters -- but they never flesh out those areas and just use them as fillers or background for the standard vocals that always seem to have melodic choruses. While the EP lacks in certain aspects, "The Plastic Mile" has some good moments.

B-