For a duo whose electronic indie-pop is as unassuming as the genre often portends, Daniel Zott and Josh Epstein of Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. have definitely given themselves a head start by deciding on clever presentation. In line with their moniker, Zott and Epstein often arrive onstage zipped up in NASCAR apparel, a sartorial choice that could be read as a comment on blog-era personal branding. But It’s A Corporate World, the duo’s debut full-length, is far less subversive or colorful than its title and accompanying wave of online hoopla might suggest. Instead, the Detroit-based outfit has pieced together a streamlined collection of pleasant but forgettable pop tunes that come and go without much punch. Unlike with The Postal Service, whose blueprint is used carefully on It’s A Corporate World, the focus here is on production more than songwriting. With the exception of the loopy harmonies of “Skeletons” or the twirl and whirl of “An Ugly Person On A Movie Screen,” there’s rarely a hook in place to match the many bells and whistles that Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.’s work largely depends on.
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