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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
Haymarket Riot
Bloodshot Eyes
Thick Records

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
The guitars. It's all about the guitars, the matching maroon Gibson SGs. From the onslaught of "Technicolor Bombs" the guitars are at the helm, steering the band's course like so many wind up rabbits in a three wheeled shopping cart. You may think you know Kevin J Frank, but let me tell you it isn't just his hair that's getting huge, it's also his guitar. Bolstered more than ever by the guitar of Mike Bennet, Frank takes the highwire lead that the complimentary guitar provides. The licks come hot and fast, one moment diligent to task and the next ringing out of step. The guitars pulse and surge, lunging ahead to narrowly escape the chasing low end. The kick drum pounds relentlessly as bassist Fred Popolo lopes along side at a feverish pace of his own. Popolo and drummer Billy Smith both provide outstanding performances in their positions, but the guitars lead, everything else follows, and the pace rarely slackens. Soon enough the players are just as battered as the listeners, Frank explaining "cuts down my back, spit in my mouth, I hope I make it out."

Coming in to Bloodshot Eyes Haymarket Riot already had two solid releases under their belts, two releases that might be all but forgotten in the wake of this album. The opportunities presented by a larger recording budget are apparent through this entire album, but in few places as clearly as on the back to back tracks "Placid" and "(The) Fight". With the latter especially, the guitars are each given a distinct voice with which to speak, the bass and percussion perform in their own arenas and the vocals are given that extra pinch that your basement four track won't provide.

While the tone is distinctly blue collar, Haymarket Riot perform their chores with an artistic voice. There are enough high note acrobatics and tricks like the use of soft tactics in "Twenty" to spice up the diligence with a bit of fun. You'd have a hard time looking me in the eye and telling me that "Immaculate" isn't one of the best damn rock songs you've heard in a long time, and I would be lying to you myself if I said that I hadn't listened to "Bought Your Weight" again and again and again.

At a time like this, with boy bands and white trash rap being passed off as rock and roll, it has to be about one thing: the guitars. Haymarket Riot are blazing, and they're all about the guitars.

Reviewed by Eric J Herboth
Eric J. Herboth is the founder, publisher and Managing Editor of LAS magazine. He is a magazine editor, freelance writer, bike mechanic, commercial pilot, graphic designer, International Scout enthusiast and giver of the benefit of the doubt. He currently lives in rural central Germany with his two best friends, dog Awahni and cat Scout.

See other reviews by Eric J Herboth

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