Merge Records spent 2009 partying it up in honor of their 20th anniversary. And as a fin coda to that celebration, the label’s founder Mac McCaughan got his band Portastatic together and recorded Make It Sound In Tune, an EP of Merge-only cover songs. The disc tackles label stand-outs like Spoon and more obscure acts like the Renderers, satisfying any and all Merge diehards out there.
The band’s take on Destroyer’s “Foam Hands” may be the best song of the bunch. If Dan Bejar’s arch singing always turned you off, his words delivered in McCaughan’s voice (which is, he has admitted, like a tightening screw) should come off as a nice substitute. But, love or hate Bejar’s act, this song, more than any other Destroyer tune, sounds right at home in McCaughan’s ragged indie rock treatment. And those children shouting are not only scary as hell, but they are so 2009. Remember?