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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
Evaporators
Ripple Rock
Mint Records

Rating: 7/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Over the last 10 years or so, The Evaporators have earned a reputation as one of Canada's most entertaining live bands. I cannot attest to the truth of that statement personally, as I have never seen them, but after hearing this record I believe it whole-heartedly. Ripple Rock is an album chock-full of catchy hooks and pop-punk rhythms that are annoying and satisfying all at the same time.

Kicking off with the infectious "Addicted To Cheese," this album is in your face (in a weirdly pleasing way) right from the start. Band leader and famous weirdo Nardwuar the Human Serviette's voice is piercing, but in a subtle, affectionate way.

Just when it starts to get a little too abrasive, they throw a hook at you that you cannot get enough of, and they do us the favor of not taking themselves too seriously, which helps.

This is apparent on tracks like the anthemic "(I've Got) Icicles On My Testicles," with lines like "turn up the heat/I gotta save my meat/you might be saving money/but I'm gonna cry/my family jewels are freezin'/and i ain't leavin'."

Sounds corny, doesn't it? I thought so too, until I listened to it. It's full of sweet, rambling guitar solos and heavy on the Wurlitzer; it's so over-the-top hilarious that it can't lose.

Another highlight is the flat-out rockin' "I Don't Need My Friends To Tell Me Who My Friends Are" with it's slammin' double guitar solos and straight-up rock and roll drum beat. When I listen to this song, I can picture them playing live on stage, slamming guitars into the Marshall stacks and causing a ridiculous explosion of some sort. It's ridiculously fun, and surprisingly fresh.

But wait! There's special guests! One track features Rahzel (of the Roots) trying to teach Narduwar how to do the vocal scratch that has made him famous, and one features Snoop Doggy Dogg stealing Nard's stuff! These are quite funny.

The album ends with 5 "bonus tracks" by Nard's other band, Thee Dublins. The tracks are essentially the same as the Evaporators', only with a few more electronic goodies and subtle harmonies thrown in on top of the weirdness.

Overall, this is a high-energy, inventive album that is full of great rockers that will have you banging your head and cracking up all at the same time. Word is that this album was handpicked by Jello Biafra to be released on his Alternative Tentacles label, so look for it soon!

Reviewed by Stephen Smith
In a recent staff survey Stephen Smith included a picture of his cat, Nikolai, since he said he didn\'t have any of himself.

See other reviews by Stephen Smith

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