The Hoboken trio’s latest, I Am Not Afraid of You And I Will Beat Your Ass, begins and ends with two epic, 10-minute-plus psych jams; sandwiched between are 13 songs showcasing everything else the group has learned over the past 20-some years. Styles are mostly rooted in ’60s pop, per usual. But the palette’s expanded; horn arrangements and lonely strings spike their familiar bass-drum-guitar-keyboard mix, and they even pull off some vintage R&B moves (see the boogaloo-inflected ”Mr. Tough,” which rhymes its title with ”I do believe we’ve had enough,” and may or may not be about George W. Bush). Digesting the jazzy experiments of recent projects — including film soundtracks and an EP of Sun Ra’s ”Nuclear War” — they embellish what they long ago mastered: making shaggy, dreamy, cuddly, explosive indie rock. As for the inspired title: Okay, I give.
I Am Not Afraid of You And I Will Beat Your Ass