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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
Brandon Butler
Lucky Thumbs
Gypsy Eyes

Rating: 7/10 ?


April 16, 2007
No paternity tests have ever been taken to prove it, but for all intents and purposes, Brandon Butler practically helped father emo-core in the mid-'90s with Boys Life. The Kansas City post-punks drew up a template of screaming vocals, dissonant guitars and loud-soft dynamics for bands like Thursday to follow. When Boys Life called it quits, Butler up and left the family, choosing instead to wander Canyon's spacious alt.-country skies for a pair of albums.

Now on his own, Butler has crawled inside a whiskey bottle of rust-belt Americana championed by Uncle Tupelo and the Jayhawks. Lucky Thumbs, Butler's second solo album and first for the upstart indie label Gypsy Eyes, is a stripped-down set of raw, slow-burning guitar anthems ("Sparks," "Fire And The Wheel" and "Throw Back Rockers"), ramshackle Dylan-esque folk ("Born Perfect") and stately, piano-based ballads ("Never On A Sunday") that tells one hard-luck tale after another in Butler's polluted wheeze. Joined by Fugazi drummer Brendan Canty and cellist and pianist Amy Domingues (Telegraph Melts, Bob Mould, Dead Meadow, Jets to Brazil), whose strings and keys lighten these dank quarters, Butler, beat-up acoustic guitar and all, has never sounded more assured. Luck has nothing to do with it.

Reviewed by Peter Lindblad
Peter Lindblad lives in Appleton, Wis., and bleeds green and gold just like all the Packer fan nutjobs in the area. He does draw the line at wearing blocks of chedder on his head, or any other body parts for that matter, though. His professional career has taken weird twists and turns that have led him to his current position as an editor at a coin magazine. He hopes his stay there will be a short one. Before that, he worked as an associate editor at a log home magazine. To anyone that will listen, he\'ll swear that Shiner was one of the greatest rock bands to ever walk the earth. Yet he also has much love for Superchunk, Spoon, DJ Shadow, Swervedriver, Wilco, Fugazi, Jawbox, ... And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead, Queens Of The Stone Age, and Modest Mouse, among others.

See other reviews by Peter Lindblad

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