"Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end," sings Semisonic's Dan Wilson, and with that, the Minneapolis trio's breakthrough hit "Closing Time" launched the career of a sensitive-guy singer-songwriter who seemed as if he really understands
. Three years later, it has all paid off. On Semisonic's new album, All About Chemistry
, Wilson's got sex on his mind. Obviously, all that talk of finishing off that one last drink and warbling, "I know who I want to take me home" has led to some serious bedroom action for him. You can't get past the album's cover -- a beaker with a stiffy -- without getting the point. Wilson is one horny guy. And sometimes, as the masturbation ditty "Get a Grip" proves, he doesn't even need somebody else in the room with him. But whereas other albums obsessed with sex, like, say, the new Trick Daddy CD, are brimming with crass, barely listenable cuts, All About Chemistry
is actually a sometimes clever, always-tuneful pop record that will have you humming along with Wilson. (Hey, he even got Carole King to sing a song with him.) Singer-songwriter Pete Yorn, who works similar (but more subtle) territory on his debut, Musicforthemorningafter
, joins Semisonic on its tour. He's had songs on the Dawson's Creek
and Me Myself & Irene
soundtracks, but don't hold that against him. Yorn, like Wilson, has a way with melody, and although he tends to undersing (think Matthew Sweet-style hooks coming out of J. Mascis's mumbling mouth), the diversity packed into Musicforthemorningafter
should give way to an exciting night of music. And appropriately, he's the sweet-talkin', take-my-time gentleman getting the stage ready for the bump and grind to come.