CD Review : Tinted Windows “Tinted Windows”

Taylor Hanson is back, and this time he’s sporting a new hairdo and skinny tie. Yes, that Taylor Hanson. The “MMMBop” one. Now, 12 years after Hanson’s debut single was released (which happened to reach number one in 27 countries), the singer, who, believe it or not, is now 26 and married with four kids, is back as the lead of supergroup Tinted Windows. And he’s actually managed to join forces with some pretty stellar musicians: Cheap Trick’s Bun E. Carlos, Fountains of Wayne’s Adam Schlesinger and ex-Smashing Pumpkin James Iha. Sure, at first glance, it’s a bit of a strange lineup, but it actually kind of works.

Hanson’s voice is still young, sweet and smooth as a baby’s ass, but with a bunch of longtime veteran rockers behind him, the volume is pumped and the guitar riffs are heavy. Their self-titled debut is a set of tracks about worn-out themes like broken hearts and young love, but don’t let that discourage you. Songs like “Can’t Get a Read on You” and “Cha Cha” are catchy as hell. In fact, the entire album is a bit addictive (did I just say that?). All those Disney-era pop stars are so last year because Tinted Windows is bringing power-pop to a whole new level.

Don’t expect to see this band touring anytime soon, however. Hanson is apparently rejoining his brothers, Zac and Isaac, for a Hanson tour in the near future. Hanson has actually been reported as saying that Tinted Windows was always just a side project, and that it was never intended to replace his former pop sensation group. But honestly, how long could the guy stay away from screaming female fans, even if there are only probably a couple dozen or so left? Obviously not very long.