April 24, 2006 at 04:00 AM EDT

How We Operate

type
Music
Current Status
In Season
Producers
ATO Records
genre
Rock
We gave it a B+

Gomez have always been charmingly out of step with contemporary Britpop, their shaggy rock recalling Van Morrison and Traffic more than Blur or Coldplay. But on their fifth studio album, How We Operate, the quintet sheds most of its psychedelic trimmings and bluesy wailing for a disc of tight, mature Chris Martin-style pop-rock. They land a bull’s-eye, as career high points like the peppy power-pop ”Girlshapedlovedrug” and peacenik sing-along ”See the World” point to a renovated Gomez and a winning new way to Operate.

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