Friday, March 18, 2005

E, III

Engine Down- Demure

If nothing else, I can be amazingly fickle, to the point where the second album by a band doesn’t do it for me because I feel like I’ve heard it before. Witness ‘Demure’ (actually the band’s third, but you know.)

More conventional in that the same guy sings the whole album (the high-pitched vocals, not the deep ones or the ones by the guy whose voice gets higher and louder like punctuation at the end of every line.) More of the same stuff as on ‘Sound’- I just didn’t feel it as much.

Eulcid- The Crane EP
Eulcid- The Wind Blew All The Fires Out


Well-regarded Boston three-piece that didn’t sound like much of anything else being done at the time. I saw ‘em play a bunch of DiY venues, basements and classrooms, impressed enough each time to buy a CD or a patch or whatever. Never my favorite, but always welcome on the bill.

I always thought that Eulcid were talented and on the right track- their stuff had veins of DC running through it (Circus Lupus isn’t a bad reference point as a whole- the same sort of off-kilter, jagged songwriting, except better produced and much less hoarse vocally. Some of the more melodic guitar bits, few and far between, granted, had little hints of the more tuneful post-punk Dischord stuff.) Interesting stuff, to be sure, using the loose parameters of punk and twisting ‘em to their own ends. The problem that jumped out at me, after all this time, is that the guys in the band are all really talented players, but that they’re a three-piece. They suffer from that malady that afflicts three-pieces sometimes where everything is going on at once and it’s hard to hear what the hell is going on ‘cuz everyone is just going off.

Evens- s/t

Did you hear the giant sigh? All over town, people put the Evens record on, having very little knowledge of the band save for the kids’ video on Pancake Mountain and maybe a live show or two.

It’s crazy- Ian MacKaye has yet to put out a dud album, twenty-some years in. Some of the Fugazi records have taken a little bit longer to get into than others, but they’ve all held up, aged well. Word started trickling down that Ian was involved in a new project with Amy Farina (she used to drum for the Warmers- me and Rich Ladew were both excited at the prospect, anyway) and the eyebrows went up a little bit. Everyone I know pulls for the guy, looks forward to the new project, but there’s the thought, nestled in the back of yr. brain- what if this is the one that breaks the streak? What if he puts out one that, you know, sucks? The guy’s human, after all.

Baritone guitar, drums, dual vocals, experimenting more with being quiet than being loud. Airy, spacious, well-written. Straight ahead. That sigh was everyone realizing the streak continues. Whew.

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