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Around Hear Page 3

| November 30, 2007 | 0 Comments

In a world of cutthroat musicians with six-page press kits, Mitch And The Polecats are refreshingly modest. “I hope U enjoy it,” writes harmonicist/vocalist Mitch Mathena on his band’s perfectly shabby one-sheet. Get Naked is so casual it negates the need for introduction, focusing instead on immediate, easygoing love songs (well, lust songs) and smooth, harmonious blues jams. On the unpretentious title track, MATPC acknowledge their “part-time” band status. If they were full-time, they probably wouldn’t sing about it. (
– Mike Meyer

While their sense of humor is appreciated, Nice Peter may be a bit too tongue-in-cheek for some. Though hardly offensive, tracks like “Fuck Guitar Center,” “50 Cent Is A Pussy,” and “Mystery Of The Clit” grate after a while. On the other hand, however, the musical chops they show off on Suburban High School are solid and are highlighted most on the melodic, strangely innocent ’60s pop of “Snufulupugus.” (
– Dean Ramos

Edward Anderson’s fingerprints are all over Plane‘s latest release, I See Love In The Future. Recorded as a duo with founder Edgars Legzdins, it remains to be seen what direction the band will take musically since Anderson’s defection to head up his own group, The 1900s – though the addition of Gary Stier (Buffalo Nickel) bodes well. Despite Anderson’s departure, the record’s nine tracks sparkle with an ’80s new wave vibe. The bouncy “Save The Lost Its Past” and the hip-twisting title track could pass for outtakes from Irish singer David Kitt’s records. (
– Janine Schaults


While The Silents display rattle-and-hum overtures akin to U2, Nirvana-esque solidly grungy guitar, and Cure-ish overtones, the quartet’s keyboards give them a much more singular sound, one especially evident on the fourth, fifth, and sixth cuts as the band hit their stride midway through their first full-length CD. One of the more accomplished and self-assured local submissions in a long time, The Silents’ debut is not only one well worth waiting for, but also leaves one wanting more. (
– David C. Eldredge

Sparkling production and sophisticated songwriting mark David Singer‘s 10-track East Of The Fault Line. Melancholy rock moods – as on the Beatles-esque “Command Overhead” and “Snow” – are delivered with a well-orchestrated backing band of piano, multi-tracked guitars, and vocals. Singer’s warm, storytelling vocals predict the end of California on the title track, and the mix gets even theatrical in its melodic poetry, as on “Halflight” and the Queen-inspired “When You Come Around Marie.” (
– Jason Scales

With an acoustic guitar, sparse percussion, and lyrics about drinking, Lou Swift sounds like he’s aiming for the country side of The Rolling Stones with Take Me Home. However, it’s hard to tell if Swift and his band were drunk and being rambunctious during the recording or just can’t play their instruments. There’s a lively spirit to this album that can be appreciated, but the musicianship and production can’t. (no contact provided)
– Joseph Simek

Trakan has the Frank Black thing down on his bilingual surf-and-shoegaze debut, Opening Soon Under New Management. The multi-instrumentalist even looks the part, helping the most Pixies-like of the CD speed along without a hitch (“Summer,” “Here Comes Julie”). When Trakan slows for “A Fool’s Lament” and “Anne-Marie,” his peppy Teenager Of The Year vibe erodes, and he whines like a French Billy Corgan over naked twang. Thankfully, “High In The Bathroom” restores teen spirit. (
– Mike Meyer

Elgin-based psychedelic blues/jam band Wishbone Jones gives fans a taste of its live show with the 4 Played – Nobody Got Paid. The eight tracks here span original and cover tunes and stay close to a normal guitar/harmonica blues rock sound at first, getting more rock-ish by the record’s end. The band plays well and seems to believe in what they are doing, which, as we know, makes all the difference. (
– Mike O’Cull

Forget about Britpop: The six sweet melodies on Last Of The Sunday Drivers, the new EP from Adam McLaughlin’s ad-hoc group The Weightlifters, could easily be labeled Brightpop. Infectious cuts like “Undefined” and “Oblivion Shines” overflow with cheery keyboards and dynamite drumbeats, all unified by bubbly vocals and breezy guitars. (
– Jeff Berkwits

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Category: Around Hear

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