Sunday, December 04, 2005

slam dancing about architecture

Rogue Wave - "Descended Like Vultures"
Sub Pop, 2005

The last thing I want my music to be is benign. To me, there's nothing worse than a harmless band. Maybe that's why I have trouble dancing at the Jason Anderson shows, or repressing my chuckles at U2 concerts when Bono dances funny. I don't want my leading men to dance funny, I always want there to be at least an unspoken threat that someone in the front row may get slapped in the face, peed on, or otherwise humiliated for being a fan. All music can do this, not just rock and roll. Stravinsky's "Rites of Spring" did it, Johnny Cash did it constantly, and all of the rock acts I enjoy come with an implied "Eat shit and die."

That's why I have a hard time loving bands like The Shins, even though they're good, admittedly. At no point whatsoever, when listening to The Shins, do I think "This shit will put hair on your chest."

Hold on a sec and let me just say that I am quite done trying to sound more intelligent than I am when I write in blogs, and I have no intention to do wordsmithed over-analyses of records. I believe in the Beavis and Butt-Head school of music reviewing. It either rules or it sucks. That being said.

So, Rogue Wave is a Shins-like band who are equal parts benign, acoustic-guitar strumming, to tapping hum-alongs and distortion pedal-stomping, barn-burning face slappers. They will harmonize and make you think "Oh, Brit-pop infused low-fi indiepop! I am in my comfort zone!" and the next thing you know, BAM, there's a hole in the wall and your parents are going to be home soon, everybody get the fuck out the house.

I recommend it for fans of Andrew Bryant, The Shins, and the Pixies (I hear a little late-career, "Trompe Le Monde"-era Pixies in there). Gimme my indie cred!


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