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Music Reviews

Screaming Females - Castle Talk
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Castle Talk
Don Giovanni
Trent Reznor & Atticus Ross - The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
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The Social Network [Original Soundtrack]
The Null Corporation
Deerhunter - Halcyon Digest
Halcyon Digest
No Age - Everything in Between
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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
Fireworks Go Up!
You're Welcome
Baryon Records

Rating: 6/10 ?

October 1, 2004
Fireworks Go Up! has formed from the remains of the 90s emo group Joshua, attempting to move into a new foray. It poses an interesting question; what kind of music does one make when emo becomes exhaustive? The answer, in this case, is pop-punk. While this could bring up a whole chicken-and-egg debate, we can at least take comfort that for singer Dan Coutant, the transition is fairly fitting.

You're Welcome takes parts of The Get Up Kids, Squeeze and the Anniversary and spreads them, layer by layer, like thick pop frosting. It is an album of addictive junk food, not meant for any nutritious value, but tasty nevertheless.

From there, it is your average poppy, punk-tinged album, but the reverence of Squeeze plays out most of all. On par with the hallmarks of its genre, You're Welcome is innocuous and pleasant, filled with infectious hooks and with a bounce in its step.

If you're in a mood to hear this sort of music, Fireworks Go Up! is not a bad place to look, though their main obstacle is effort - there are times when it feels they are trying too hard, or smiling too forcefully. They are constantly "on," and this is a little distancing, overall.

The best tracks, then, crop up at the end of the disc, when it feels as though they're winding down. The seventh track, "Me Myself" shows they've settled in, and is more naturally likeable in that respect. It captures a hint of 90s indie fuzz, and is indefinitely more relaxed than its predecessors. In a batch of songs constructed to be easy, "Me Myself" is the easiest, or at least most genuine, as it lets out a sigh.

"Post Commitment Fit" and "Just a Hate Song" end the album as two more disgruntled tracks, feeling far more real in their discontent. The former features angular guitars and a wash of bitter feelings, and the latter is a low-burning, listless endeavor that caps the album with a poignant, used-up sentiment.

As anyone from toothpaste commercials to family reunions could tell you, smiling all the time can be quite tiring. These highlight tracks are a saving grace for You're Welcome; the down turned moods give much-needed authenticity. Granted, a great Squeeze song is undeniably fun and will seldom leave your head, but it's nice to be given something more. Thankfully, they've done just that.

Reviewed by Sarah Peters
A former music editor and staff writer for LAS, Sarah Peters recently disappeared. Perhaps one day she will surface again, who knows.

See other reviews by Sarah Peters



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