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[02.21.2011 by Bridget Doyle]


 » 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]


 » 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!
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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
»No Age
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 Presidents of the United States of America
Love Everybody
PUSA Music

Rating: 6.5/10 ?

October 1, 2004
Another brief peek into the wacky life of The Presidents of the United States of America shows us that, while times have changed, little with the trio has. Quickly, ask yourself: What has PUSA done in the last six years? If you answered "not much," you'd be right, in a way. On an individual level, the three have been busy with side bands, career pursuits and family relationships, but no new material has come from the group in this stagnant period until now.

Despite their hiatus, PUSA is still the master of their domain with Love Everybody. Listeners would still be hard pressed to find music that is more original and eccentric while staying clear of an experimental or artsy edge. In fact, their sound falls into a category in which only bands such as Primus can exist - those that are classified in a unique genre of their own.

In other words…
Q: What do The Presidents of the United States of America sound like?

A: In short, they sound like, and only like, The Presidents of the United States of America.

No other band could be quite so successful while exclusively playing absurd, cute pop rock songs that are intense at their core. Nor could any other group get away with singing about furry animals, nature, food and rambunctious little children. Some might say that PUSA has never grown up, that they still hold onto those things that were important to them when they were rambunctious kids themselves. In a way, this attribute is consistent and desirable; however, as it applies to their new album Love Everybody, sometimes it's not such a good thing.

It is safe to say that PUSA would have a difficult time duplicating the leap to success that they made with their first album (The Presidents of the United States of America) and sensational songs such as "Lump," "Peaches," and "Mach 5." Such tracks were a hit because they broke the monotony of music's humorless heartfelt love tunes and political and social odes.

The songs that the trio creates have always been done with a whimsical attitude attached, making them easy to enjoy. The latest effort is not much different. The topics are still very lighthearted, but the act seems to have lost some of the effectiveness that it once had. Additionally, the songs of the new album, as a collection, are not nearly as catchy or original as older material. Certain segments come off as contrived rock clichés and squander the fun/unique side (examples: using synthesizer or tambourine; both seem decidedly un-PUSA).

On a more encouraging note, Love Everybody features developments that some may have thought possible from the group when they initially hit the national scene. The first four songs are solid and varied enough from each other to offer the listener several textural dimensions.

"Love Everybody" leads off in typical fashion with a low-end melodic bass line that launches the hyper new age blues explosion. Drummer Jason Finn brings fruition to the hard yet quirky edge, with incredible precision and a feel for what each song needs. "Some Postman," "Highway Forever," "Poke and Destroy," and "Drool At You" all have the potential to be new hits for PUSA, led by a two-string bassitar attack and comfortable on-the-porch dual vocals.

It is refreshing that in an increasingly angry world, there is a band like PUSA that can write goofy songs that have no underlying significances. On the other hand, sometimes you wonder if this band can rehash the outright infectiousness of their previous days without intellectually still living in them.

Reviewed by Josh Zanger
Joshua Ian Zanger, a native of rural Chicago, rocks many a world with his writing, style, and generally sweet aroma.

See other reviews by Josh Zanger



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