News, Reviews, Features

At The Drive-in to reform?

We don’t want to get too ahead of ourselves, but let’s be honest, an ATD-I reunion is just about everything we’ve been wishing for since their infamous ‘indefinite hiatus’ back in 2001.

Ex-ATD-I main man, singer Cedric Bixler-Zavala has expressed in an interview with Drowned In Sound that a reunion is not out of the question. When asked he replied with;

“I don’t know what to say about that, really. We’ve been making amends with a lot of the members and having some really good talks with them. And we’ve been trying to get our financial business in order because a lot of people have been ripping off that band really badly…as far as the business side goes. I wouldn’t mind it. You know, it might happen, we just have to iron out a lot of personal things. A lot of it we’ve dealt with already and I’ve apologized for a lot of things I’ve said and the way it ended…we’ll see what happens.”

The band split in 2001 amid rumors of in-fighting over musical differences, recreational habits and the hype they received on the back of last album ‘Relationship Of Command’.

This famously lead to two offshoot bands, The Mars Volta & Sparta, who let’s face it, despite initial praise aren’t really up to much.

We’ll keep you posted on any developments.


29/06/2009 Posted by | Music, News | Leave a comment

Dinosaur Jr. – Farm

It’s good to know there are always somethings you can rely on. You can always rely on, for example, England to not reach further than a semi-final in any football competition. You can always rely on a bacon sandwich to mop up the hungover. I can always rely on this computer to fuck and crash trying to do the simplest of tasks. Likewise, you can rely on Dinosaur Jr. to release great album after great album.

If there was any justice in the world, Dinosaur. Jr would be huge. U2 huge. Unfortunately, there’s no accounting for the publics taste, so Bono and his band of cronies are huge thanks to their insipid shit, yet J Mascis and his band remain just under the radar for a truly mainstream audience.

Farm is a little rougher around the edges than previous efforts, but it’s all the better for it. The fuzzy guitar pop, laden with the trademark Dinosaur Jr. solos, are an absolute delight to listen to.

Unusually for a band who’ve been around this long, their urgency and power show no sign of decline as age catches up with them. Everything about this album is classic Dinosaur Jr., from Mascis’ sharp drawl right through to the everyman lyrics. Standout tracks include album opener Pieces, Ocean In The Way and Over It, where the trademarks are typified best.

One of the best albums i’ve heard this year so far.


25/06/2009 Posted by | Music, Reviews | Leave a comment

British Sea Power – Man Of Aran

The trouble with soundtracks is all too often, the standalone album is nothing merely but a collection of soundscapes which don’t seem quite right when taken out of the context of the film. It’s quite a surprise then, that the actual cd (the dvd of the re-soundtracked documentary comes included) is actually half listenable.

Whilst for some of the album, the tracks are long atmospheric slow burning instrumentation, it starts to pick up someway around the 6th track (Boy Vertiginous), a melodic guitar led piece which is akin to the quieter reflective works of mogwai (sorry to bring them up again).

The real highlight of the album, however, is Spearing The Sun, which clocks in 20 seconds short of 12 minutes. It’s an urgent hyperactive piece, the kind of extended distortion heavy jam British Sea Power are known for finishing their live sets with. The almost hypnotic drums in the intro carry on underneath the wall of distorted feedback.

From then on in, it’s almost as if BSP realize they can’t just get away with moody atmospherics for an album and decide to write some lovely string-laden pieces. The result is something that at times seems to approach Instrumental Post Rock.

I’ve yet to watch the re-soundtracked documentary, but it’ll be intriguing to see how the songs differ when placed in context.


01/06/2009 Posted by | Music, Reviews | Leave a comment