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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
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Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
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The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
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No Age - Everything in Between
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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
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Fat Possum
Jerome's Dream
Completed 1997- 2001
Alone Records

Rating: 6.5/10 ?

February 15, 2005
Flash back to the 1997: a group of young friends from Connecticut decide to form a band and play loud, fast music to scare the crap out of their parents. Four years later, they break up.

Sure there's some gaps to fill in with the history but that's the basic story of Jerome's Dream, who have now decided to assemble, in full glory, their entire recorded output as a loud and completely unintelligible screamo/post-hardcore group. The 42 tracks on this two disc set might seem exhaustive, were not the average track length about 1 minute long.

In each good minute, there are lots of distorted instruments, loudness and questionably shouted/screamed vocals. With songs that feature no real build up, break down or distinctive playing, the sounds collide into a soupy mess of bass, guitar, vocals and drums. At first listen, it appears futile to decide where one song ends and another begins - especially in the band's earlier and most similar-sounding tracks.

While on the first disc, some tracks are quieter and even feature a tight groove and hint of melody, like the standout, "Double Who? Double You!", the group mostly relies on blistering scream fests. The songs collapse into brutal borderline psychotic screams and short repetitive blasts of noise. To say the least, it's not for the meek and mild, and would probably scare off 99.99% of the general population.

The reliance on anger, volume and noise continues on the next disc. The second disc shows the band in more potent form, as load and brutal as possible. Its sludgy riffing and throat ripping screams move distortion and anger to an art form; though it's hardly groundbreaking, it's got to be a sincere display of unshielded emotion.

In this collection, there's not a lot of variety. However, when the band mixes things up, it functions at its peak. On disc two, aside from the all out screaming, there's an intriguing trio of emo-core songs ("Thirty Dollar Bill" , "Everyday at 3:06", "The Last Time We Talked") that recall the obscure bands of a fledgling genre like Anomie, Angel Hair, Embassy, and I Have Dreams.

Jerome's Dream is the sound of youth. It's not refined. The ability and talent is shaky at times - but it's loud and fast for kids that like loud and fast music. To fans of Saetia, Frail, Coalesce, You and I, Converge, The Assistant, Forstella Ford, and the scene that begat them, this collection will seem like a nice time capsule. To others, it will seem like a large collection of scary, self-indulgent, and perhaps charming, amateurism.

Reviewed by Dan Williams
A staff writer based in Brooklyn, New York, Dan Williams is a frequent contributor to LAS magazine. He once lived in Köln, Germany for a semester, is currently persuing his MBA in New York, and recently switched sides and began working as a publicist for Special Ops Media in New York.

See other reviews by Dan Williams



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