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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
Aveo
Battery
Barsuk Records

Rating: 8/10 ?


October 1, 2004
Despite its letter deficiency, "emo" has become the latest four-letter word in the world of indie-rock. No self-respecting band whose members have graduated from high school wants to be clumped into this clichéd category, one that has come to represent mundane lyricism and pre-teen suburban angst. The cover for Aveo's Battery led me to believe that the album would be emo all over; what with the name of the band meaning "I desire" in Latin, the cover art depicting a forest being cleared for a monorail, and song titles like "Awkward at the Knees" and "Frostbitten." In short, I was afraid.

Luckily the connection to emo stopped just past Battery's skin, if it ever existed at all. Battery is full of songs about heartbreak and disappointment, but its not a blog set to music; Aveo sing songs of experience, not innocence, and they've nailed the ten power-pop songs on the disc.

From a logistical standpoint Aveo have a strong support group which includes legendary producer Phil Ek, who's penchant for the Modest Mouse edge appears on every track of Battery. Unlike Isaac Brock and company, however, the perfectionists of Aveo keep their arrangements air-tight and they lockstep their way through most of the songs like a slightly happier and slower Cursive.

Coming from Barsuk, a label representing some of the best songwriters of the day (see: John Vanderslice, Ben Gibbard) you'd expect big things from Aveo, and they do not disappoint. Occupying a comfy spot between transparency and therapy, William Wilson's lyrics are straightforward but not cheesy. "The TV was on as I remember everyday/ And the years blur out monotony just paints and stays" sings Wilson on "Desert and the Great Divorce," neither pushing his post-marital anguish nor obscuring it. Most of the songs on Battery have this signature understated melancholy within songs about breakups, big cities, and bad dreams.

The finest songs such as "Haley" and "Newton and Galileo" slowly build up with a sense of drama that matches the subtle lyrics, but "Dust That Dreams of Brooms" and "Awkward at the Knees," are less dynamic and can become stale after only a few listens. The majority of the well-crafted songs on Battery lend themselves to those moments when you're feeling a little adult despondency coming on for no good reason, and its nice to know that you've got Aveo's shoulder to cry on.

Reviewed by Andy Brown
A regular contributor to LAS, Andy Brown lives in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, but doesn\'t think he has an accent.

See other reviews by Andy Brown

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