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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
Alkaline Trio
Crimson
Vagrant Records

Rating: 8/10 ?


June 17, 2005
Matt Skiba and Dan Andriano are certifiably un-dateable. I may be able to relate to some of their heart-on-bloodied-sleeve anecdotes, but no girl I know would necessarily like to become one of their subjects.

Heartbreak and masochism form the web of Alkaline Trio's catalogue, and Crimson doesn't deviate from these well-set themes. It does, however, offer some of the groups most polished work to date without relinquishing their raw intensity or duplicating their previous endeavors. The trio has grown up, with their baggage still tightly clutched.

"Time to Waste" begins the disc as one of the most engaging album openers in recent memory. Piano balladry explodes into the groups' signature sound and imagery of cutlery, vultures and guts. Oh, my. Taking advantage of surround sound, "Burn" also showcases the band's songwriting maturity, and can be categorized as one of the Trio's most sonically interesting compositions. And, although I prefer the original, their rerecording of "Sadie," has expanded depth and clarity that makes it a highlight.

"Settle for Satin" somehow [poppily] presents the predicament of settling in and finding comfort in the darkness; although it doesn't necessarily cover any new territory from 2003's Good Mourning, it proves the band hasn't lost their touch for goth inspired pop-punk. In fact, the track shows such macabre noise has become their everlasting staple.

The closing track, "Smoke", also exhibits the bands evolving maturity and pop sensibilities; although it is a ballad, it isn't sparse like "Clavicle" (from Goddamnit) or as acoustic as "Blue in the Face" (from Good Mourning). It is beautiful, but not spineless - with "Smoke" the band has finally crafted a ballad as strong as their faster songs. Crimson may not be AK3s best album, but it's a welcome, mature effort from one of Vagrant's best bands.

Reviewed by Natalie B. David
A fresh graduate of the Grady College of Journalism at the University of Georgia, in her spare time she can be found clumsily manipulating words and phrases for LAS and Beautiful/Decay magazine, hungering for sushi, naming inanimate objects or pondering the existence of stiletto heels. If you see her, you should buy her a cup of coffee because, chances are, she probably needs it.

See other reviews by Natalie B. David

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