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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
Reach the Sky
Friends, Lies and the End of the World
Victory Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
The fate of Reach the Sky and the degree to which they will be granted any type of credibility relies on the shoulders of one man. With their driving guitars, cutting vocals and punctually rhythmic bass charging straight ahead, there is only one thing dragging them in the opposite direction.

It is very rarely when a record comes along that is so solid all around that it is held back from glory by one obvious factor. Imagine, if you will, Refused's Shape of Punk to come with a song full of polka music stuck in after "Worms of the Senses". It is rare indeed that one pea can so ruin a great musical pod, to the frustrating point of wanting to stick a screwdriver through your pupil. Yes, it is rare, but I'll be damned if Bob Mahoney didn't just jump out of my headphones with a huge black and yellow Stanley flathead in his hand.

I understand that this band is part of the whole Pennywise led scene of moto-cross and skate rock oriented army of chain walleted punks, but I don't think my intelligence has been this insulted since I heard the Vue the first time. As impersonal as we try for record reviews to be, I feel directly attacked by the horrid chim-chim style of snare drum pounding put forth on these twelve songs. This album could be listed with a gold star if the drumming were even half as good as Texas is the Reason's.

How does this get out of the studio? How does this get out of the front offices? How can people let this slide? It is painfully obvious that the percussive duties are suspect on this album, that as far as the drummer is concerned his duties on track 11 are merely an extension of the numb-skull ideas he put forth on the second track. Indeed, it scarcely matters that on tracks like "Wherever You Go" the guitars are churning out driving chords that have the kind of catch that Green Day would pay for because they are marginally noticeable from the time the drums kick in with their hardcore jackhammer, pounding with a creativity only unmatched by an ape.

With only a few tricks stuffed up his sleeve to save him from an almost slave-like position to the standard garage punk snare drum rapport, Bob Mahoney keeps Reach the Sky from being better than H20 at their own game. As anthemic and catchy as a Lagwagon number and as positive as Hot Water Music on "No Division" this album should be screaming out to everyone, but it isn't. Because Bob Mahoney ruined an entire album with his lack of originality. With another drummer, this record would be a whole new ballgame.

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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