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As the curtain is about to fall on the Modlins, they say goodbye with the release of not one, but two new studio albums. At showtime, fans old and new pack the Tin Can as full as an unopened PBR tall boy.

The four nattily dressed lads open with "Benefit of Doubt," a keyboard-driven boogie number with a melody as bright and warm as a sunny San Diego afternoon. If I were a surfer, I'd be singing this all the way to the beach.

They go straight into "Burn a Bridge," the bastard offspring of Blur. "Next Time Around" and "Ghosts" are mournful, soulful piano ballads. And "When the Dodos Come Home to Roost" is the best Elvis Costello track Declan McManus never wrote.

Each song demonstrates the the Modlins skillful arrangements but especially the last of the 15-song set, "Cabin Closed," with its staccato riff set over a funky backdrop and audience handclaps.

There was a time when pop music wasn't a phrase that made people groan. The Beatles were a pop group! The Modlins make music in the same vein - great melodies, catchy hooks, and engaging stage presence. It's no coincidence that guitarist Eric Killan is (pardon the expression) a dead ringer for John Lennon circa '62.

Here's hoping "indefinite hiatus," doesn't mean forever. The Modlins will be missed.

  • Concert: The Modlins
  • Date: July 2
  • Venue: Tin Can Ale House
  • Seats: general admission
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