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Great Sabatini, The: Dog Years

Look at that cover—somebody in a monster costume, mugging for the camera. From a certain point of view, it brings to mind a yearbook photo of a high school senior, the kind in which the sitter looks forward to the future but can't see him or herself with any irony. So there it sits, that red monster, its lower fangs jutting upward, its yellow eyes glaring, its modestly-sized horns pointing. What are we to do with this creature?

Who knows? Like other monsters, this beauty stands at the threshold of experience, marking a boundary. As we move past this border, this uncertain space, we discover a kind of music that is equally monstrous, equally uncertain, and equally funny.

The Great Sabatini, for those who don't know, is essentially committed to producing energetic noise. That's not to say the band has produced a bad album—they haven't. Noise rock is probably more popular than ever. Even better, it has the potential to develop some rich and exciting new ways of listening. To my ears, this album is entertaining and fascinating stuff; to call it unconventional would be accurate, but it wouldn't be enough. To be as clear as possible, this is a punk / noise / metal hybrid, an experiment with sound that has enough structure to keep listeners somewhat grounded. The energy here is fun and unflagging, an Ahab-like push toward an impossible target.

I liked it. The best thing about this album is its endless variety. The band twists and turns things in different directions. The result is exciting. Check out "The Royal We," "Reach," and "Life During Wartime." I really doubt the latter is a cover of the Talking Heads classic, but wouldn't it be cool if it was?

Track Listing:
1. The Royal We
2. Guest of Honor
3. Nursing Home
4. Periwinkle War Hammer
5. Reach
6. Aleka
7. Munera
8. Pitchfork Pete
9. Ditch Diggers Unlimited
10. Life During Wartime

Added: July 22nd 2014
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 1562
Language: english

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