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Twin Town High (vol. 8)
Sweet 16: Celeste Tabora blasts through 16 HOT HOT HOT new releases!
Wednesday 21 August @ 09:58:27
CD reviews by Celeste Tabora
1) Seldom - Romance
2) Various Artists - How We Rock
3) Guttermouth - Gusto
4) Vex REd - Start With A Strong and Persistent Desire
5) Matt Keating - Tiltawhirl
6) Mudhoney - Since We've Become Translucent
7) Tegan And Sara - If It Was You
8) Tara Jane O'Neill - TJO TKO
9) The Bangs - Call + Response EP
10) Tommy Keene - The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down
11) Wavuenfold - 3FOLD a compilation of three EPs
12) Liars - They Threw Us All In A Trench And Stuck A Monument On Top
13) Blood Brothers - March On Electric Children
14) Sing Sing - The Joy Of
15) Melochrome - This Is Motion
16) Woodbine - S/T
Casa Recording Co.
This album starts off with an upbeat, even danceable song; but somewhere between track 2 (“Meteor Showers”) and track 9 (“Grow Up”), the feeling melts into a melancholy madness. Seldom’s music is great, but rather common. Singer Yuuki Matthew’s vocals are lazy—like he isn’t even trying to perform well—but his attitude works with the theme of Seldom’s self-discovery / self-loathing on “Romance.” If you are hip to the piano-driven pop music of today’s Indie Rock, get yourself some Seldom.
2 Various Artists
How We Rock
Perfect for the non-committal punk/rock music fan, this compilation offers superb tracks from The Hives, The Donnas, The (International) Noise Conspiracy, Supersuckers, Rocket From The Crypt, Electric Frankenstein, and Gluecifer. If you need a sampling before you can talk yourself into purchasing a full-length, your prayers have been answered.
Remember the days when your main concerns were girls, boys, parties, parents, being cool, and the upcoming show you can’t miss this weekend? If this describes your last weekend (or if you just need some help remembering), you might enjoy the pseudo-comedy-punk of Guttermouth. They’ve always done it with more heart and humor than that Blink-1-80-whatever band, and they’ve been around long enough to be called the true forefathers of funny-punk.
4 Vex Red
Start With A Strong and Persistent Desire
If you like today’s radio programming, you’ll like Vex Red. They sound just like every other ‘rock’ band on MTV or commercial radio out there right now. Pretty and sultry male vocals that turn aggro somewhere in the song, arrangements that still hold on to the structure introduced by Seattle grunge of the early ‘90s, even elements of spacey rock of the faux-Radiohead variety: Vex Red is predictable, and pretty disappointing.
5 Matt Keating
Street date: August 27, 2002
What do they call it again? Ah, Roots Rock. You know, the kind the Boss or John Cougar Mellencamp play. There’s also elements of a modern Simon & Garfunkel here. Keating presents us with a very American album. Makes you homesick for a field of dreams. “Tiltawhril” is sweet and genuine, completely enjoyable. Check “Man Overboard” and “Float Away” to help you escape the concrete jungle.
Since We’ve Become Translucent
Faves: “The Strait Life” and “Take It Like A Man”
Once a Mudhoney fan, always a Mudhoney fan? I think so. You’ll find more good ol’ rock and roll from Washington’s most steadfast rock band on Translucent. Mudhoney are originators, and they just keep on claiming that heavyweight championship belt. So let loose and rock out. Awwwooooh!
7 Tegan And Sara
If It Was You
Sisters with voices—and guitars. Tegan and Sara show up their foremothers (Liz Phair, Anna Waronker and their ilk) with this infectious album. This sophmoric effort makes you love being a girl, or makes you curious about what it’s like to be one. Fall in love with “Monday Monday Monday” or “City Girl”—you’ll fall in love with the whole album! So go and get it!
8 Tara Jane O’Neil
I was just talking to a friend the other day about how music doesn’t always have to be a raunchy good time—that sometimes we humans need an intimate, non-abrasive, tender sort of pop album. We could have been talking specifically about TJO TKO, if we had known of its beauty then. Like a more subtle Cat Power, Ms. O’Neil demonstrates real maturity with this record. Quiet, not sedated; awake but not abrupt—this album features one beautiful song after aonther.
9 The Bangs
Call + Reponse EP
Kill Rock Stars
Street date: September 10, 2002
The Bangs are so contagiously high-energy, everyone could use a little bit in their lives! The Bangs trade in the same sort of sunny pop-punk that made a name for the Go-Gos back in the early 80s. Listen to “New Scars” for an example. Buy this album and you’ll find yourself pogoing around the next crowded party to these short but sweet tunes!
10 Tommy Keene
The Merry-Go-Round Broke Down
Pop-rock perfection: after 20 years as a songwriting musician, is there any doubt that Keene has it down? You probably haven’t heard a sweeter melodic strait-up pop album in a while. It’s really impressive just how excellent this album sounds. Do you miss that clean cut-American pop? Well, here it is. Get it while it’s hot!
3FOLD a compilation of three Eps
“File under: Electronic: click-hop, IDM electronics,” the one-sheet says. I can’t argue. This brilliant album creates a very modern atmosphere. The English duo help keep electronic music moving with their mellow instrumental creations. You must purchase this album to show off at your next intimate gathering—it might very well earn you a spot in the musical elite for the evening!
They Threw Us All In A Trench And Stuck A Monument On Top
Is it true? Is New York to the 00’s what Seattle was to the 90’s? Lets see, The Strokes, The Yeah Yeah Yeahs, The Rapture, Radio 4, Longwave, The Mooney Suzuki…and now, get to know Liars. This release is bursting with punk dance hits. (And no, that is not a fake accent—the lead singer is actually an Aussie!) It’s one of the most wantable discs I’ve come across in a long time! You’re bound to enjoy the start-stop repetition and brattiness that distinguishes Liars sound. So what are you waiting for? Go out and get yourself some Liars today!
13 Blood Brothers
March On Electric Children
Three One G
Would you understand if I said I found Blood Bros. somewhat comforting? The vocals consist mostly of screams, and the music underlying them is faster faster faster than most music is played. I find comfort in Blood Bros. because they pull it off, they do it well, and they set a new target for people of their ilk to aim for. It’s fun to listen to on top of it all. In conclusion, I say, “March on Blood Bros!”
14 Sing Sing
The Joy Of
Sing Sing features Emma Anderson, formerly of Lush. It says so right on the cover, on a little sticker. What it doesn’t say on the sticker is that this album is fabulous! It sounds nothing less than beautiful, with pleasant female vocals and layers of euro-chic instrumentation – loads of catchy beats and piano. It’s not crazy or complicated to listen to. “The Joy Of” walks the line between a gratifying listen and genuinely good music without requiring a lot of effort from its listeners. (Note: It’s a great make-out album)
This Is Motion
Do you need some alone time? Here’s a good accompaniment to your solitude. Mellow and sophisticated, almost like the French band Air’s sibling. Easy listening, without feeling like it’s elevator music. So make time for yourself (or a group of your nearest and dearest friends) darling and pick up Melochrome!
Oh wonderfully indie-hip! This Birmingham trio takes you to a world where all-nighters are common and everyone is a dreamer. Reminds me of Cat Power, Azure Ray, and maybe early Lush. The music hugs and comforts you—reminding you that everything will be okay, and that no one is going to care about the smallest details of the present a year from now... so ditch your therapist and seek treatment from Woodbine. (Okay, maybe don’t ditch-ditch the therapist…)