CD Reviews: Perfect Red, Hot Young Priest, The Evening Episode…

Category: Blog — @ 6:40 pm February 27, 2007

Here’s a handful of leftover reviews from ’06 from the intern that we need to get out of the way before we move onto ’07. Brendan just got another shipment of discs last weekend, and yours truly is working on a few on his own, so keep your eye on the Matrix

Perfect Red, …Rebuild the Afterworld (self released) — No no no no no no no! Listening to this was painful. It has nothing new to offer to hardcore music. I wouldn’t even classify it as “hardcore” had they not been trying so hard to fit into the genre. This is wuss-rock. And the singer is borderline Geddy Lee. Not to say that there is anything wrong with Mr. Lee (I am, in fact, a big fan), but his vocal approach has no place in hardcore music. Rating: No — Brendan Greene-Walsh.

Tim sez: Brendan, you’re a knowledgeable guy, but come on, this doesn’t even remotely resemble hardcore, nor does it try to. What you got here is your typical guitar-fueled goon rock bordering on ’80s hair metal. If you’re into big, wailing guitars and buckets of riffs — a la Godsmack — you might dig it. I didn’t. Rating: No

Hot Young Priest, Fiendish Freaky Love (Two Sheds Music) — It’s difficult to find a three-piece that can fully actualize its status as a “power trio.” Hot Young Priest is on the verge. Their simple, stripped-down songs allow the lyrics and vocal prowess of Mary Byrne to pull you in. “Soft Focus” starts with “Pregnancy’s made a hopeless / Triple-X figure out of me.” That’s quite a way to look at being knocked up. And in the end, the grunge/punk falls just a bit short. The songs are repetitious and uninspired. Rating: No — Brendan Greene-Walsh.

Tim sez: With a name like Hot Young Priest, you expect some kinky shenanigans. Instead you get some laid-back indie rock with plenty of fuzzy guitar and a front-woman who reminds me of those ladies in Belly. In fact, the whole thing resembles ’90s bands like Hot Rod and Madder Rose (then again, modern day rockers Metric also come to mind). When they add a layer of warm keyboards, like on the lush “Wintergreen,” or some backbeat hand-claps (like on “Bear the Scars of Old,”) they take it all that much further, but never totally stray from their grungy, fuzz-toned roots. Rating: Yes

The Evening Episode, The Physicist Has Known Sin (Slowdance Records) — For awhile now every time I hear raspy female vocals I automatically turn off the music. Teresa Eggers has helped me out of this slump. Though raspy, her vocals are pronounced and float beautifully over the top while dripping right back down to create a gentle mix. Piano, lap-steel, keys, theremin and intricate programmed beats run throughout the album. Every aspect is calculated, and the overall product is a wonderfully entertaining. Rating: Yes — Brendan Greene-Walsh.

Tim Sez: I’m a sucker for breathy women singing about losing their way over fuzzy synths and dub-beat tracks. Pouring some trippy guitar over the whole thing makes it that much better. Overall, a nice way to apply technology to indie rock. They would have been a nice fit on 4AD, back when 4AD was good. Rating: Yes

Look for this week’s column about new Saddle Creek subsidiary Ink Tank Merch online right here tomorrow…

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