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 » 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.
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 » 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!
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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
Glass Floor
DeSoto Records

Rating: 6/10 ?

October 1, 2004
[Reader's Note: In an effort to approach Glass Floor with as much detachment as possible, I have promised myself to make no mention of Maritime members' past lives in the Promise Ring and Dismemberment Plan. Also, as an even greater effort to remain objective, I am going to pretend that my name is Bryan and that two of my favorite bands roughly seven years ago weren't the Promise Ring and the Dismemberment Plan.]

Nearly a decade has passed since Milwaukee brewed some new music for indie-rockers to hype. In the nineties, the city was a hotspot for up and coming emo bands, including Compound Red and Camden.

But the 21st Century has been cruel to Milwaukee: Compound Red and Camden are no more, the Brewers no longer play in the easiest division in baseball, Miller Brewing Company is now owned by South African Breweries and Pabst Blue Ribbon is still bad beer. What does this have to do with Martime's debut LP, Glass Floor?

Nothing. Or maybe everything.

Something has to explain what has mellowed Maritime singer, Davey VonBohlen, to the point of nearly dragging down a conventional but solid pop rock album - with horns! Add a little life and soul to VonBohlen's voice on Glass Floor, especially on "Someone Has to Die," "James" and "If All My Days Go By," and I may just have to declare him his generation's Van Morrison.

All knocks on VonBohlen's voice (don't get me started on the chorus of "Sleep Around") aside, for a debut pop rock record, Glass Floor is extremely accomplished and mature, reminiscent at moments of Coldplay, the Flaming Lips and Jets to Brazil. Credit producer J. Robbins for a lot of its success, allowing a chorused guitar to sneak into the opening track, "The Window Is the Door," an inter-weaving string section to conclude "I'm Not Afraid" and VonBohlen's voice to shine on "Souvenirs."

Though Glass Floor approaches excellence at least once on each of its 13 tracks, nearly every uplifting approach is breached by something - be it the return of VonBohlen's voice or an obnoxious trumpet - the exception being album closer, "Human Beings," which represents Glass Floor's truly exemplary moment.

Complete with a slow, powerful rhythm, a simple, fuzzed out guitar solo, and a heart-stopping fake ending, "Human Beings" does everything with three instruments that Glass Floor fails to achieve with a horn and string section. Even VonBohlen sounds comfortable, as if singing in an emo band were his true calling.

Maritime's debut offers a lot of promise but only one plan. In "Sleeping Around," VonBohlen declares, "I can't live my life like a pop song anymore." I'm not sure what life as a pop song entails, but I hope life as some other song brings him happiness. Otherwise, the second Maritime record may need to be titled, "Nothing Feels Good," or even worse: "Maritime Is Terrified."

Reviewed by Brian Sutherland
The last we heard, Brian Sutherland lived in Chicago. He\'s a friend of Sarah Peters. That is about all we know about him.

See other reviews by Brian Sutherland



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