18 Nov 2010 @ 7:22 PM 

Records. As with a lot of things that come out constantly and in large numbers, there are a few hits and plenty of misses… even from a few bands I love. Sometimes they pleasantly surprise me while others just surprise me with a punch in the stomach. This week I’ve got a little bit of both for you as well as a few other emotions, so try to keep up while I wildly cheer, cry, yell and finally lay down for a nap.

Cloud Nothings: Turning On– While I’ve stuck up religiously for lo-fi in the past, sometimes someone comes along and makes me think I might have been mistaken. The best part about lo-fi rock is the energy that it tends to have. Thats #1. If you don’t have enough of it, you’re fucked. Unfortunately, this is also the biggest thing that Cloud Nothings lack on a consistent basis. They start off on a good note with a song that was so energetic that I immediately thought they might be a lo-fi version of Les Savy Fav. My excitement was almost immediately quelled as the album continued. Its not the tempo of the songs that made them drag so much, it was the uninspired drumming and low-energy vocals that really killed this for me. If they can fix those problems on their next record, they might have something here. If not, they’ll drift back into obscurity as quickly as they came out of it… 5.2/10

Old Street

Maserati: Pyramid Of The Sun– Instrumental rock bands are a dying breed nowadays, let alone instrumental psychedelic rock bands and Maserati isn’t helping things with their latest record. While I’ve not only enjoyed every record they’ve put out until now, I considered them one of the best instrumental post-rock bands around… that is, before I heard this album. Sidebar: Maserati lost their drummer about year ago in a tragic accident and this album is a tribute to his last works. That being said, this record is painfully repetitive and it recycles good ideas and riffs over and over to a point that it at times make it unlistenable. I don’t usually mention how much of a chore it is to listen to something that I don’t like so I can write about it here, but let me tell you, it was a long 50 minutes. Times three. But all is not lost if you’re still interested in their past works, which are all wonderful. Start with The Language Of Cities and make your way to the present. In fact, instead of just leaving you with an mp3 from this forgettable album, I’ll also include a favorite of mine from their 2007 release, Inventions For The New Season. I just can’t leave you with a bad taste in your mouth when they used to be so much better… 4.0/10

Pyramid Of The Sun

12/16 from Inventions For A New Season

The Radio Dept.: Never Follow Suit– As with every EP thats released soon after or just before an LP, the new tracks are whats going to make or break a record. Ironically, this also what makes this difficult for me to rate. The extra songs by them are so short that just when I’m starting to enjoy them, they end. Then, On Your Side is almost a medley dedicated to the memory of Never Follow Suit, which is kinda strange. Then we have a dub remix of the title track by Pistol Disco that extends the title track to double it’s length which turns it into a long, overdrawn and forgettable memory. Then it predictably ends with the radio version of Never Follow Suit. So yeah, I have mixed feelings about it. Overall, its decent but thats about it. Personally, I’d say get the new tracks and forget about the rest… 6.8/10

On Your Side

TOBACCO: La Uti– While the previous record I wrote about focused on a couple of new songs with one remix, TOBACCO‘s La Uti is almost exclusively a remix record except for three totally new tracks. The formulation is simple: Take a song from Maniac Meat, and rap your ass off. The results are not only impressive, they surpassed my expectations at nearly every turn. I approached this with a great deal of skepticism because the originals were more than impressive on their own. Adding vocals of any kind is a tricky fence to walk, but Rob Sonic, Anti-Pop Consortium and the others did it artfully. Unholy Demon Rhythms‘ vocals are a bit annoying, but it still works on a certain level because they’re minimized for the most part. As usual, the three new tracks with guest vocals are inventive, beat-heavy and flow beautifully. Finally, something an indie kid can cruise around with and not look like a total douche. You can thank TOBACCO for that… 8.8/10

TV All Greasy (Feat. Anti-Pop Consortium)


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