Embarrassment, The: The Embarrassment Ep LP

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Before they broke up in 1983, this quartet from Wichita, Kansas rocked furiously, with less brittle/more melodious guitar than the Scottish new wave pop bands Orange Juice and Josef K to whom the Embos were sometimes compared. While John Nichols’ vocals weren’t incredible (Bill Goffrier’s guitar work nearly was), the Embarrassment did convey a promising array of nuances—from wistfulness to sarcasm—and an inquisitive, adventurous way with arrangements. The lyrics vary in quality, but “Don’t Choose the Wrong Song” and “Elizabeth Montgomery’s Face” show budding verbal pithiness; “Wellsville” has a laconic melodic strength. Best of all, most of the debut EP’s five songs grow on you with each listen.

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