Sunday, August 31, 2003

album: It's The Ones Who've Cracked That the Light Shines Through
artist: Jeffrey Lewis
label: Rough Trade Rating: 1.5 Out of 5 *s

Jeffrey Lewis, the admitted "ex-Hippy" Explains It All. This album was just released at a bad time. It tries to all the things Logan Whitehurst and the Junior Science Club new album does, but fails painfully. It's isn't funny. It isn't clever. And it isn't ironically lo-fi, it just comes off as poorly produced and ineptly performed. Top it all off with several bouts of Lewis' 20-something attempt at Wisdom that would sound hokey in an AfterSchool special.

Play if you like: Valium. Umm, solo work from the Moldy Peaches folk (especially Kimya Dawson)
Indecencies: Drug reference in 1 and 3, but no actual bad words in the album
Preferred tracks: 10 comes closest to being amusing, 1,4 and 11 are schmalzy in the extreme. 3 mentions an attmepted drug deal in Chapel Hill.

-- J

album: This is The Von Trapps artist: The Von Trapps
label: self-released (?) rating: 4 out of 5*

I'd discuss the band's history -- the album was four years in the making -- but it's a bit moot as the band is no more. Fortunately before the end, this disc got released. They describe themselves as "Indie-noise-pop" and that's pretty accurate. It veers a little more into rock than most pop bands (the so-called "noise" part?) but it's upbeat and a little groovy. A short, sweet little album.
Play if you like: Aisler's Set, the Soviettes, and Le Tigre's first album
Preferred: All, but the first three are all swell.
All tracks clean

Site -- J

album: Chain Gang of Love artist: the Raveonettes
label: Columbia rating 4 out 5 *s
Riding the Garage wave in pop culture, the Raveonettes are a pastiche of several poluar acts: they're Scandanavian (Denmark to be precise), a ambiguously defined boy/girl team and have a retro look to them, as you can tell from the cover. You know they're probably a label Bitch when they wind up in a full page spread in Rolling Stone.

But for all that, it's a good album: it's loud and it's rock and there's a lot of reverb guitar. There's nothing about it that sticks out as great, but nothing about it is bad or badly done. Just some rock, yo.
Play if you like: The Hives, The Flaming Sideburns, The Dandy Warhols, The Velvet Underground.
Indecent: Track 8 says "Fuck"
Preferred tracks... (Their failing is that everything sounds so alike, so pick any but) 5, 6 and 12.

Site -- J
TIP: These guys are giving away a free vinyl single with the first single from this album and an unreleased B-Side called "Bubble-gum" from IRD