Review: Brat Curse – S/T

Brat Curse writes in earworms. That’s the only logical conclusion you can come to after listening to the Columbus, Ohio quartet’s new self-titled outing, which features hooky blasts of noisy and multidimensional punk-pop. The record’s available now. It’s hard, to some degree at least, to pin down Brat Curse’s sound. At one point, say on…

Review: The Zells – “No More Heroes” EP

The Zells’ No More Heroes EP – the six-song follow-up to 2018’s excellent Failure to Slide, out today via Pittsburgh indie Crafted Sounds – starts with reverby, almost spacy guitars and glitchy percussion, a far and intentionally removed cry from the seat-of-your-pants garage-rock on which the band cut its milk-teeth. By the end of opener…

Review: Dizzy Blip – “Laundry” EP

50 words on Laundry EP– a capsule of sorts. Pittsburgh’s Sam Yeaton, a.k.a. Dizzy Blip, direct descends from Brainiac/Enon’s John Schmersal, writing angular noise-pop on detuned guitars but lacing them with reverb-polished vocals. New three-song EP, out last Monday, is a kiss on the cheek while treading unsteady boards. “Upper Fixer” is the take-away. Name…

Review: Slund – “Slundcore Superhero”

50 words on the new Slund LP, minus those. Slovenia’s Slund can slam grindcore with the best of them but its new LP, Slundcore Superhero, out yesterday, is a generic blur. Guys provide great titles – “Insulting You Disney Style,” natch.  When only one track breaks 20 seconds, meltdowns (there’s 20) get a little monotonous….

Review: Eric Bachmann – “Misinformation Age”

Only Eric Bachmann could make rage over the Trump era’s alienating 24-hour-a-day mind-fuck seem elegiac. His new, one-off single, “Misinformation Age,” out yesterday via Merge for $1 on Bandcamp and also available on streaming platforms, is a bruising missive on the information saturation of the 2010s. And it’s all set to glitchy percussion and overpoweringly…

Andre Costello and The Cool Minors – “Brighter Than Before”

Fifty words on Andre Costello and The Cool Minors new one-song shot. Minus those, wise guy. Catchy indie pop, out Oct. 2, with all the right strut and inflection. Some of these bridges will knock you off your feet. “I/ know the way to your light.” Great textures, rousing yet contained close. Costello’s voice is…

Review: Horehound – “Weight” EP

Fifty words on Weight. Well, not counting those. Pittsburgh champions of dirgy doom-metal follow 2018’s Holocene with a two-song gem. (Sorry, vinyl’s sold out.) Slow and entropic, with serious shout-outs to early Sabbath. The chorus of “Unbind,” the “A side,” could melt Maynard’s face. B-side, with some icy vocals from Shy Kennedy, flirts with Kyuss-style…

Review: DANA – “Glowing Auras & Black Money”

The cover for Glowing Auras & Black Money, the sophomore outing from Ohio art-punk/mostly punk outfit DANA, is all wrong. The image, which features a glossy illustration of a woman’s hand puppeteering the planet Earth, is all too prim and proper and its message is plain and clear as day – which is nothing like…

Review: Tender Mercy – “War Within”

Under the moniker Tender Mercy, musician Mark Kramer creates eerie and unnerving skeletons of songs out of little more than a few carefully plucked notes on guitar, some semi-whispered vocals and valleys upon tender valleys of reverb. He has a new record, title: War Within, out this month on Louisville label Obsolete Staircases and it…