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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
Frodus
And We Washed Our Weapons In the Sea
Fueled by Ramen Records

Rating: NR/10 ?


October 1, 2004
With an opening snarl from Nathan Burke's bass the mood for this gargantuan rock beast is set. There will be new rules set here, and then those rules will be broken. Like a gnarled old Wizard behind a curtain Shelby Cinca and his lone guitar amplify and filter themselves into a huge wall of six string surf. The alternation between hypnotic snake charmers and soaring cosmonauts creates an oceanic sized ebb and flow over the top of Jason Hamacher's heavy metal percussion. Dynamics, distortion and volume are employed liberally to fuel the fire and whip the mind into a frenzied state.

The mini-epic of "The Earth Isn't Humming" feels like an album in itself before it leads into the equally flourish and feature filled tale of salvation in "There Will Be No More Scum". Then there is "Out-circuit The Ending", another expansive composition that recalls the scathing vocals and needle-like guitar of their lone full length for Tooth & Nail. Song after song, variation after variation, climax after climax, the assault continues in dramatic, royal fashion.

There is such an enormous sound here created simply through a matured process of writing, recording and producing, that it is strikingly Failure at times. "Belgian Congo" itself shares a heavy resemblance to the latter half of Fantastic Planet and mimics the intricate spacing in place on the albums that Ken Andrews and Greg Edwards assembled in the late nineties. Time after time Frodus lift you to what you assume is the pinnacle of the entire expedition, but there is always more high ground ahead. When the guitar kicks in with that utterly fatalistic pace on "The Awesome Machine" there are still nearly 20 minutes of uncharted water ahead for them to navigate, including the album's true masterpiece, the colossal and sinister "Year of the Hex".

There has been a lot of hype over this band and this record since its release earlier in the year, but make no mistake about it, And We Washed Our Weapons In the Sea is a serious, no bullshit lesson in a very diverse curriculum. The word "groundbreaking" has been thrown around a bit too much and has generated a bit of negative backlash that I can, to a certain extent, agree with. The word that should be used in its stead is "monumental", a truly apt adjective for a tour de force such as this. This record may not be a lot of things to a lot of different people, but one thing that it certainly is is brilliant.

Reviewed by Eric J Herboth
Eric J. Herboth is the founder, publisher and Managing Editor of LAS magazine. He is a magazine editor, freelance writer, bike mechanic, commercial pilot, graphic designer, International Scout enthusiast and giver of the benefit of the doubt. He currently lives in rural central Germany with his two best friends, dog Awahni and cat Scout.

See other reviews by Eric J Herboth

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