The Blue Van | Music | Pittsburgh | Pittsburgh City Paper

If Soundtrack is Scandinavia's The Who, then The Blue Van is its Them and its Downliners Sect. In other words, The Blue Van is Nüggets. And just in time for spring, too.


Named for the psych-ward transport in its native Denmark, The Blue Van is guilty of a few mental infirmities: vintage-instrument OCD, schizophrenia (they think it's 1966 London), maybe a speck of manic depression. Or at least mania. The band's also guilty of thinking that a slew of U.S. and U.K. pop-culture catchphrases make you fluent in English lyricism. "Buy the ticket / stand in line / buy the ticket / free your kind," on "Remains of Sir Mason" (complete with James Taylor Quartet-referencing organ-smash intro).


The Blue Van is perhaps even more derivative than The Soundtrack of Our Lives, but similarly endearing -- as though every garage-mod revival passed them by, and they're doing it for the first time, fresh-faced, angry and ballsy. If Rolling is indeed an Art, The Blue Van has it down cold.

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