(Cinnamon Toast, 1992)
The debut from Jale, four Canadian Janes and zero Canadian Johns who were the Canadian pals o’ the Canadian bigwigs in Sloan, and – fancy fancy! – future hotshot Sub Poppers themselves. Sounds like? Sounds like a grungier, gutsier Velocity Girl, though there are definite hints of early-/mid-period Brian Jonestown Massacre in the band’s crunchiest moments (the pounding chorus of “Twisted” and those guitars on B-side “Sweetness” in particular). There’s a heavier touch on the rhythmic end – toms a-plenty – than many of the era’s indiepop groups, which is much appreciated as it help Jale avoid the sickly alterna-sweetness that lurks beneath the surface of ultimately-AOK songs like “I Lied.” So while nothing here quite makes me want to jump up and down and shriek with joy, the thing honestly ain’t half bad overall; go ahead and score it a win.