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


 » 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]


 » 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
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
»No Age
Everything in Between
Sub Pop
Robyn - Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
Body Talk Pt. 1/ Body Talk Pt. 2
The Walkmen - Lisbon
»The Walkmen
Fat Possum
Nice, Nice
Go-Kart Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
Cougars. Wild beasts, big cats ready to leap and strike down unsuspecting prey, tearing them limb from limb, bloody meal to bones in short order. Eviscerating your insides as you try to stave off whatever impulse that drives them to shred your insides, your bowels and entrails left hanging for all to see. Cougars, the band, have a similar effect.

I thought I recognized the front cover of the Cougars newest on Go-Kart. Many times I have perused my favorite music publications and, almost without fail, there was always an ad for an album with a naked woman riding a Cougar, with the animal turning to nibble at her exposed breast. This was all pre-Super Bowl, mind you. So naturally I cracked a smile when I opened this up and wondered just what was going to be in store. The liner notes scared me at first, because these Cougars are comprised of eight members, some of whom play various horned instruments - First thought, Oh crap, a ska band!

Cougars are a completely a different animal than that, much to my approval. The opening song "Close to Fast, Loud, & Big" tears into your ears with a buzz-saw of guitars and just a light touch of the saxophone and trumpet, which here compliment beautifully without becoming overpowering. The fun sets in early and doesn't let up for the remaining 30-plus minutes of Nice, Nice.

Forget close. Cougars are there.

A band playing explosive, blistering rock of this caliber is easily going to draw comparisons to Rocket from the Crypt, an all time favorite rock outfit. Cougars nicely fill the shoes of Speedo and the gang, and at times also remind me almost eerily of in-their-prime Sweep the Leg Johnny. In fact, Matthew Irie's raw vocals bring the rawk, conjuring up images of Spencer Moody (Murder City Devils) fronting RFTC.

The grinding guitars don't stop for even a minute and this disc plows on through its duration, with loaded guitars creating a bombastic sound from song to song. Stand out tracks include "Michigan Sharky," and the closer "Duke's a Champ". This is one disc that will not leave my player for a while. Forget all that Strokes crap. Cougars are the new Rock!!!

Reviewed by Jake M. Rizy
A contributing writer for LAS who lives in Arlington, Texas.

See other reviews by Jake M. Rizy



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