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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
Desert City Soundtrack
Contents of Distraction
Deep Elm Records

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
On the whole, I find standard emo records teary and non-threatening. They present emotion in snack sized portions, with all of the taste but little of the nourishment. Desert City Soundtrack seeks to break the mold of the current sound by creating a brand of moving noise rock that borders between the insightful and the inaccessible.

While the closest comparison would be ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead, this recalls a time when that honorable band was just getting warmed up. In contrast, Desert City Soundtrack seems less tight; they are looking for a clear path to follow, and remain afloat by passionately screamed vocals and bizarrely tuneful chord structures.

One downside is that the songs erupt into cacophony, time and again, and little distinction between the tracks. However, while most post-hardcore is based on volume, Contents of Distraction balances its scalding, rough tendencies with proficient and often-lovely piano parts. The melodicism keeps the group grounded, yet shows their capacity for future improvement. If they capitalize on their experimental tendencies - the dynamics between the wild and the tame - and truly manipulate it, they will be a major contender in an exciting scene.

If anything, the band takes the word "emotional" and capitalizes on it, showing such a stringent range of dark emotion that it firmly dismisses the weepy emo mentality. In fact, it may be too intense for some, as it is often spastic, loud and jarring. This is the type of music that will put you on the defense because it knows all of your weak spots, and in that regard, it is refreshingly, brutally honest.

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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