Some people didn't know what to make of Cheap Time's self-titled debut album when it was released in 2008. It was a huge leap from their first 7-inch of the year before, and it didn't really sound like anything else going at that time. Too glamtastic and bubblegum for the garage purists and too raw for indie rockers. Cheap Time's new album, entitled Fantastic Explanations (and Similar Situations), proves that they are capable of still further artistic leaps. Guitarist / songwriter Jeffrey Novak soaks up his influences and spits out new songs with more complex structures and melodies than ever before, while bassist Stephen Braren adds backbone to the songs with his heavily compressed Roy-Wood-style playing, and new drummer Ryan Sweeney tightens up the sound while still keeping things very loose. The Fantastic Explanations sessions have also become something of legend--tracking for the album ended abruptly after engineer Mike McHugh suffered a breakdown and kicked the band out of the studio at gunpoint. Once the tapes were retrieved over a month later, Earle Mankey (ex-Sparks member and producer of the Quick's Mondo Deco and The Runaways' Queens of Noise) was brought in to mix the final album, which turned out to be a perfect match! Anyone who saw Cheap Time on tour last year opening for Yo La Tengo will be pleased with the way these new songs have turned out on record. Fantastic Explanations (and Similar Situations) will surely surprise, divide and leave fans scratching their heads as to where Cheap Time will go next!