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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
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
The Talk
The Sinners of Daughters
MoRisen Records

Rating: 7.5/10 ?

September 8, 2005
The word "buzz" hasn't passed through my lips in a long time when describing a band from Charlotte, North Carolina. Perhaps a lack of truly inspiring rock 'n' roll has left me cold, or it's the simple fact that I've lost the lust I once had for cornering new and fresh-sounding independent musicians. Maybe it's because I come from a town where an overabundant amount of Dave Matthews clones command, mall-core mirages as originality and funk-metal hybrids seem to be in reign of musical governing power. Indie rock is a dying minority against a backdrop of unoriginality and laziness - with exceptions few and far between.

The Talk's latest offering, The Sinners of Daughters, almost seems out of place; it is a conglomerate of collective musical mass that is aware of its boundaries, carried by a band that uses its limits to produce some truly vigilant and interesting rock epics that stand out from the benchmark mediocrity that seems to plague this city - it seems too much to ask for.

The Sinners of Daughters relies more on melodies and emotions more in common with Bob Mould's Sugar; distinctly different from The Talk's last proper album, It's Like Magic In Reverse - which was mostly compromised of hyperkinetic punk rock bombast that foamed at the mouth - the band has newly formed a more comforting distinction between impacting urgency and alleviating the listener into a state of solace.

"Any Other Day" opens the album with this sort of ease. A tranquil, harmonic ring resounds over Justin Williams's unusually dark voice; it evokes a feel akin to latter day Sunny Day Real Estate. An almost progressive rock piece, it screams 'album single' and could very well catapult this rather unknown band onto the heels of the indie rock elite.

The first half of The Sinners of Daughters takes an approach of real comforting efficiency and reinforces it with "Man Narrates", a song filled with so much visceral imagery and ambience it lifts the melody into a sensory overload with its comforting wake. The track drifts along like a ship being carried away by an active current of water; it is slowly carried to sea and loses sight of existence, only to be appreciated by the gathering of onlookers who wave their goodbyes.

Unfortunately, pretentiousness becomes evident after the third track, "I Started Running", where lyrically, Justin Williams fails miserably with lines that include, "I started running because you won't walk away/I'm loosing my mind playing these games/I thought I told you to get out of my face/You must understand I don't feel the same way anymore." It feels like junior high school all over again, and musically the band isn't as effective at creating a stable emotional grasp. Although the remaining songs on The Sinners of Daughters, especially "With Guns in our Hands", "The Search" and "Queen (She's Leaving Robe)", do well with thoughtful depth and clarity, "I Started Running" is just one of only a few hindrances that keep this album from being a card-carrying, stellar release.

The ingredients of The Sinners of Daughters consist of the following: minor chord progressions for a dark, brooding sound (this helps pull at the listeners' heartstrings, and The Talk are masters at this), turgid drum interplay (which gives the album complex depth) and my favorite - and the most effective element - the faux British accent that singer Justin Williams uses to convey his love for Anarchy in the UK.

NASCAR may bigger than anything punk rock has ever meant to North Carolina, but The Talk prove that in a city that embraces Dale Earnhardt Jr. and costly light rail, there can also be room for a socially shunned, underground reign of stadium-ready rock 'n' roll; they are on the forefront of the gradual development of rare, precious acceptance.

Reviewed by Mark Taylor
A senior LAS staff writer, Mark Taylor is a 29 year old father of a 5 year old son and husband to a wife of 6 years, living the simple life in a small suburb of Charlotte, NC.

See other reviews by Mark Taylor



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