Notes from the Underground with Pop-Art London

By on Monday, 16th March 2009 at 8:33 am
 

This installment of ‘Notes from the Underground’ features two of Pop Arts most promising bands and we review their new albums ahead of their release today. First we look at Awwblot’s debut ‘The Hi-Fi Low Life’ before giving our verdict on Bronotsaurus’s mini-album ‘You’ve Created A Monster.’

AwwBlot And What Will Be Left Of Them? – The Hi-Fi Low Life (Pop-Art London)

61lfykmyv6l_sl500_aa280_Listening to an album which is already outdated due to line-up changes is perhaps a sign of the fast paced life of a modern day indie outfit, and opener ‘DIY not DIE’ follows suit with a fast tempo and raw energy. This follows through for the rest of the record, speedy guitar riffs and catchy hooks help to cement the tracks in your mind.

Even when the rave-energy has calmed the substance remains, the beginning of ‘Jesus’ displays the band’s ability to capture an ambient tone (though it does eventually turn to garage rock). This however brings out one of the bands biggest weaknesses – their repetitiveness. It seems no track can be complete without a breakdown and whilst they’re fun for a while it soon starts to take a toll and it’s easy for the listener to lose interest..

Songwriting is another avenue where the band fall over.. the atrocity of ‘Dance, Damn You, Dance’ stick with the listener throughout the record, though there are improvements later on. The album progresses quite well, leaving disasters like ‘Orlick! Orlick!’ behind, the record closes with the infectious ‘Kids in America/Goodnight Lucy’ which makes sure that the bands promise remains ringing in the ears as the record closes.’Goodnight Lucy’ is somewhat shocking – a bare track without nu-rave keys. Pure acoustic’n’vocals is a surprise especially after a whole record of boom boxing rave-anthems. It shows the bands ability as musicians but leaves it a little late..

Overall the album isn’t fresh or anything new, if anything it’s average generic indie-dance which fails to leave behind a lasting impression, that being said there are signs of promise and whilst songs like ‘Dance, Damn You, Dance’ are written poorly they are parasitic and spread like a cancer to engrave themselves in your head. There might be a lot lacking but but I guarantee you’ll go back for more..

6.5/10

Bronotosaurus Chorus – You’ve Created A Monster (Pop-Art London)

6328_250The folky opener of Brontosaurus Chorus’s mini-album is a dark and angsty explosion – the stringy ‘Love Is The Path To Self-Destruction.’ The chorus and dramatic vocals set a high standard for the band but unfortunately the peak is reached must to early in this LP. Juxtaposed with the awful ‘Now We’re Making Out’ the first track seems like the work of a genius. The lyrics are cringeworthy; “Now we’re making out/underneath the stars.” However the progression of sound through the track is interesting, the reggae-ish skaness after the two minute mark is listenable but then the embarrassing chorus returns to remind you why you’d turned the volume down.

‘Cat Song’ starts well, the raw drums provide a good energy and the songwriting isn’t a write off. The whole track follows suit and it is definitely a highlight of the record as a whole, the pre-clamatic jam is a zealous array of sounds and has a strangely psychedelic tone to it. ‘Bonfires’ which follows starts off as an ambient chill-track, but one thing that the band can’t escape is the multi-instrumentalism. The cello and violin lose their novelty and the start of ‘David Bowie’ backs up the boredom.

The next two tracks follow along the same lines and the album fails to reach the heights of either the opener or ‘Cat Song.’ There is some promise here but the band are in desperate need of better production, too many chefs (instruments) are ruining the dish (album). The album is salvaged by the two strong tracks and combined with the debut-tag we can give the band the benefit of the doubt until album number two.

5.9/10

And that sums up this edition of Notes From The Underground.. check back later this week when we review new singles from Ono Palindromes, Walk. Don’t Walk. Driving By Night, The Penny Black Remedy and Go:Audio.

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