“Space Criminal” offers a fractured take to pop sensibilities. Sundog is aware of the tradition it follows. Many of them feel relatively broken down in the beginning held together by duct tape and glue. Over the duration of the collection Sundog gets considerably more together. Grooves gradually form around the many relatively elastic sounds. Vocals are kept light to nicely match the easy-going nature of the instruments and electronic effects. Rhythm manages to sort itself out of all of the playfulness.
Kaleidoscopic in nature the songs manage to be optimistic in mood. This definitely is true with the opener “Truth” which is one of the highlights of the collection full of sunny cheer. A jerky rhythm comes accompanied by trombone and strummed ukulele. Slowed down “Up” barely has much of a pulse allowing itself to work with spaced out criminal groove. “Dead and Gone” uses a neon palette for its rather sprawling length, complete with wheezing synthesizer hyperactive drum machine and manipulated vocals. On “Superstitions” they reach a particularly enjoyable off-kilter pop sensibility.
By the end of the album the group reasserts itself allowing for the sounds to get a little tired and dusty. This is definitely true for the quaint groove of “I Don’t Know”. On the finale of “Away” they pull away almost everything sans guitar and real drums to stomp their way towards the final moment. Akin to Safety Scissors and other pop experimentalists, Sundog has quite a bit of fun in the wide variety of sounds they employ on the collection.