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The Sea and Cake:: Everybody (Album Review)

Thanks to each of its members’ healthy sidelines — drummer John McEntire plays in Tortoise, guitarist Archer Prewitt authors a successful comic book — the Sea and Cake, one of the Chicago post-rock scene’s longest-running acts, get around to putting out an album only every three or four years. But few indie bands are as consistent as this one — which means you pretty much know what to expect from a new Sea and Cake disc: breezy lounge-pop tunes embroidered with sleek keyboard blips and gentle drum-machine pitter-patter. This follow-up to 2003’s One Bedroom opens with a bit of a fake-out: sporting a rootsy guitar jangle and a relatively assertive beat, “Up on Crutches” seems to introduce a new-but-not-necessarily-improved Sea and Cake, one more concerned with rocking than with grooving. Soon enough, though, Everybody reverts to form.