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LITERATURE

 » Full Dark, No Stars - Stephen King's new novella questions mankind's ability to trust others.
[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]

MUSIC

 » The Top 30 Albums of 2010 - Fashionably, fabulously late, our favorite music (and believe me, there was a LOT) of 2010, the year that some have called the best year for music ever. And only some of those fools work here. Plenty of usual suspects, lots of ties and a few surprises that I won't spoil, including our unexpected #1.
[12.24.2010 by The LAS Staff]

MUSIC

 » Live: Surfer Blood/The Drums at Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL - Remember when Weezer used to put together records that you could sing along to and rock out to? That's what Surfer Blood's show was like!
[11.04.2010 by Cory Tendering]

Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
»Screaming Females
Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
»Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross
The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
»Deerhunter
Halcyon Digest
4AD
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
»Robyn
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Konichiwa
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Lisbon
Fat Possum
Seafood
Surviving the Quiet
Big Wheel Recreation

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Everyone's got their "how I discovered indie rock" story, and like most people my age, Nirvana was the key to the door marked "independent music." Through MTV, interviews, home videos, and even the t-shirts they wore, the misunderstood working class band from Aberdeen, Washington became many curious youth's springboard to other bands. All of a sudden, here comes Dinosaur Jr., Sonic Youth, Pavement, and Sebadoh, right up in my shit, and I lapped it up like a thirsty dawg.

Apparently, it is still 1993 where Seafood comes from, and Lou Barlow is the pop prince inspiring tons of young and skinny kids who suck at basketball to record records in their bedrooms. The sounds heard on Surviving the Quiet bask in mid-nineties alterna-glory, and for what it is worth, it is a terrific ride of nostalgia.

Like all good indie rock alterna-pop bands, Seafood make no reservations about putting that patented brand of J. Mascis style snarling distorted guitars, melodic Joy Division inspired bass lines, and smartly arranged drumming right up front in the mix. Nothing comes on too strong, and everything fits together in sweet and simple patterns. At first listen, it's even a bit of a turn off, but the charm of a band that wears their influences on their sleeve like Seafood can sometimes crack the shell of even the harshest critic. And that is just what this band does, even if there is room for a little giggle here and there, and some embarrassing dips into wanky Sonic Youth land (especially on "Guntrip").

Jingle-jangling their way through some blistering up tempo songs, like "Easypath" and "This is Not an Exit," Seafood throw the listener for a bit of a stylistic loop that even their hero's in Sebadoh would find difficult to pull off. On a number of songs, the best examples being "Dear Leap the Ride" and "Toggle" (which ends with an especially left field rock-fest), Seafood brings out the old peddle-steel guitar, takes the tempo down a bit, and come out of the block with some of the most endearing and beautiful songs on the album.

By albums end, the title Surviving the Quiet, seems to be a bit misleading. At full blast, Seafood resemble Sebadoh and Dinosaur Jr. at their fiercest and most powerful, but the band reaches their most enigmatic potential when the volume knobs are turned down, and the cello, flute, and pedal steel, along with the understated vocals of singers David Llne, Kevin Hendrick, and Caroline Banks, seep into the mix. If one is up for the task of surviving the loud side of Seafood, their softer and gentler alter ego could end up charming the pants off of indie-pop's skinny torso.

Reviewed by Ryan Allen
A former staff writer with fabulous hair, Ryan Allen once fronted Red Shirt Brigade with his brother, Scott. He currently fronts the art/fashion punk band Thunderbirds Are Now!, with is brother, Scott.

See other reviews by Ryan Allen

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