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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
The Poster Children
No More Songs About Sleep and Fire
Hidden Agenda Records

Rating: 8/10 ?


October 1, 2004
In "Flag" the Poster Children issue a call to the world - "Get off the fence/ Get off your ass/ It's time to make a stand before there's nothing left" - and they lead by example. No More Songs About Sleep and Fire is the Champaign juggernaut's umpteenth album (okay, 9th) over the last decade and a half and it is both a sarcastic wink at rock's past (among others the Talking Heads had More Songs About Buildings and Food in 1978 and The Dillenger Four had More Songs About Girlfriends and Bubble in 1997) and an introduction to their future with new drummer Matt. Thankfully for longtime fans, judging by No More Songs About Sleep and Fire the future looks just as promising as the past.

One of the best moments on the album (and in Poster Children's storied career, for my dollar) is the Pixies-esque "The Floor" with it's acoustic intro, distorted chorus, vocal harmonizing (can't you just taste "Where Is My Mind?"), squawking guitars, and gravelly anthemic vocals. The track distills everything that's great about this album- and the band as a whole- down to a hearty saccharine crunch.

In general No More Songs About Sleep and Fire is one powerful, libertine album from start to finish. It is easy to get lost in the album by putting it on repeat or shuffle, butting the helter-skelter "Different & Special Things" up against the rich bass rumblings of the first single "Western Springs" one round and slicing the brooding fuzz-funk of "Midnite Son" with the frenetic guitars of "The Leader" the next.

Always perched on the cutting edge of user-interface technology, The Poster Children have gone all out as per usual (anyone who didn't catch their DVD Zero Stars is missing out) and rigged plenty of interactivity into the CD version of the record. There is an album length commentary track by guitarist and bassist (and new parents!) Rick and Rose (just like you'd find on your favorite DVD) and a video for the single "Western Springs." The video is great, the songs are great, the unconventional packaging is great and the Poster Children are great. There's nothing quite as satisfying as seeing your favorite bands from ten years ago step up to the plate and hit so many consecutive home runs. Here's [raising glass] to another ten years of the Poster Children.

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also released by Squid vs. Whale Records
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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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