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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
Moving Units
Dangerous Dreams
Palm Pictures

Rating: 6/10 ?


January 21, 2005
The end of the year quickly approaching, a stack of unreviewed CDs next to my computer and my impending top ten list teasing the fringe of my subconscious - I felt empty. I needed to create something concrete; complete something, feel fulfilled.

Oh look! Moving Units. I stumbled across an advertisement for their new disc, Dangerous Dreams, and like Dabney Coleman emerging from the flaming plane wreckage in Cloak and Dagger, so did this disc rise like an immortal from the stack and call to me. So, here I am, calling back, rather asking in a loud, obnoxious tone, "Seriously, this trend is still around?"

Disco/post/dance, 80s inspired punk that doesn't sound like punk or disco - and if I could dance, I likely wouldn't dance to this - and if I wanted to listen to an album in the same fold, I'd throw on Power. It harkens back to the mid 90s, when every week I'd discover at least five decent pop-punk bands and gorge myself, until the lines were blurred and I couldn't tell the difference between any of them... and it didn't even matter since I had been full for months.

This music can be good, as evidenced by Q and Not U and The Rapture, but the list is short and its shelf life is rapidly depleting. Where does that leave Dangerous Dreams? Standing in line at the drinking fountain, about mid way, peeking from side to side to see who's ahead of them.

Dangerous Dreams is a passable album that never achieves greatness, nor does it fail miserably, rather residing with the mundane. Jangled, angular guitars and pungent bass lines meander their way through 12 tracks, laced with British-inspired LA vocals. The songs reflect the band's inspirations, taking a cue from the 80s and creating danceable rhythms with somber, monotone whininess ("Anyone"), sometimes subdued, sometimes upbeat and obnoxious ("Going For Adds"), but obviously rehashed and familiar.

Interestingly enough, Moving Units formed in 2001, so it's not that they're another manufactured product of a fad or trend - rather, that they haven't moved beyond the sound that appealed to them in the first place. Dangerous Dreams becomes ironic in a sense - to play music so familiar and yet never break any ground, to mingle with bands doing it better, to become stagnant creatively - if a life's ambition is to create music, then to create music that has already been created is dangerous indeed.

Reviewed by David Spain
Based in Chicago, Illinois, David Spain is a contributing writer for LAS magazine.

See other reviews by David Spain

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