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 » 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
Langhorne Slim
Engine EP
V2

Rating: 7/10 ?


October 2, 2006
Langhorne Slim is a musician who diverts between two genres like a politician who sprints away from discussing topics of abortion and war by bringing up falling gas prices. Although his stage name, country-fied garb, and general sound association are by and far folksy, Slim's youth qualifies him to imagine himself a rocker too. This is not a negative issue but instead an important observation that his is a unique brand of roots rock that rebel rouses just as much as it lays low.

Others have tried to fulfill both styles before with marginal success (the best example being the black eye that Pitchfork gave to the career of Ryan Adams). But with Engine EP -- named after Brian Deck's Engine Studios in which it was recorded - Slim comes off as aggressive but not brash, restless but not out of control. Most important is that he can write songs, and here we see four different examples of that ability.

During all four tracks is presented the focal instrument of Slim's higher-pitched voice, which the press kit accurately likens to "the Delta whinny of young Captain Beefheart" or "Bob Dylan's vehement squawk."

In "English Tea" we get a taste of Southern country with fiddles and a waltzing drum kit rhythm; "Restless" shows the upper range of Slim's voice and a quickly plucked acoustic guitar style; "Honey Pie" shows bluesy, up-beat, dirty guitar rock; and finally, "Sweet Olive Tree" is an acoustic ballad that could fit into the soft and melody-focused discography of Sam Beam.

Engine EP is a teaser effort to the yet-to-be-named 2007 full-length release that will have Langhorne Slim further breaching the stereotype-secured walls that currently hold between folk/Americana and rock 'n' roll. By keeping his intense and rounded character intact, great things could be in store next year.

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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