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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
Dreamers and Deadmen
Trustkill Records

Rating: NR/10 ?

October 1, 2004
When I started Dreamers and Deadmen, I knew someone was going to lose some teeth while listening to this disc. Somewhere in America, someone is smiling a gap-toothed grin and pumping their fists along as Nora damages their hearing a few more degrees of severity, and they are loving every dirty minute of it.

The cover is promising: a great piece of artwork of an almost statuesque profile view of a bust, eyes closed and nose angled towards the sky…with a circle of screws creating a steel halo around the figure. That said, never judge a CD by the quality of its artwork.

Nora play metal-tinged hardcore with a chugging rock edge less the squealing and tempo changes and more a repetitive driving force, pummeling both with music and vocals. It's relentless, and unfortunately, cyclic in its nature, never quite expanding beyond the confines Nora's formula creates, but boy do they have it down well.

Carl Severson screams from disc opening to disc end, tearing through each song with as much force as the sonic assault the guitars create. This is definitely an album that will enrage, piss-off, and generally sour a pleasant mood, and while Nora isn't terribly original, they can rip a nasty tune. The title Dreamers and Deadmen is somewhat misleading though, as the songs side more with the deadmen than the dreamers.

Lyrically and conceptually simple, the songs deal of loss and regret and the constant reminders of both, rarely spilling over into the realm of positive thought or hope as the title of the album would indicate. But in its simplicity lies the perfect accomplice to the music, and Severson is never impeded by a mouthful of syllables to really let go and punch home his message in screamed bursts. It's a bit ominous and angry as hell, but effective.

This isn't a thinking man's record, but it hardly appears that Nora have any intentions of pawning it off as one. This is about a desire, a drive, a force. Nora delivers a hardcore record perfect for live performances and mosh-pit tussles. Show goers beware: bring a mouthpiece or helmet, because it's going to be a rough crowd.

Reviewed by David Spain
Based in Chicago, Illinois, David Spain is a contributing writer for LAS magazine.

See other reviews by David Spain



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