Photo by Rebecca Mason Adams
Providence’s gothy post-punk trio hit all the marks of their genre, but have their own voice in songwriting. “To The Grave” closes out their stellar first EP Way Out. The vocals are angsty and trembly but with real power and control. It’s dark music, Halloween-y and morose, but it’s not depressing. There’s an element of theatre and fun to their compositions. Fans of The Cure’s first album would be foolish to sleep on Way Out–expect big things.
Atlantic Thrills’ LP Vices takes its cue from The Ramones; they speed up the pop structures of the 50s into something fresh and vicious. Atlantic Thrills dial the reverb up (and up and up). As the band conveyed in an e-mail, “We tracked this tune wet and dirty with lots of verb and space echo.” Despite the surf guitar tones and rollicking live performances, there is actually some shades of early Vampire Weekend toward the end of this track.
No philosophical treatises buried in this pop goodness. As they put it, “The songs content I think speaks for itself…. ‘It’s ok, we are stoned, let it go.’”
There’s a tendency in music writing to personify the guitar. Critics will talk about what the guitar wants, does, feels as though it were an entity separate from the guitarist. But a guitar performance really comes down to fingers and the person they belong to. A shredder with heart, Greg Burgess’ lyrical playing and melodic solos are coordinated superbly well with his supportive rhythm section. The other 2/3 of the trio make a sturdy sea to rock on.
So far this is the only track The Z-Boys have shared, although a live performance is up on youtube. Their record comes out September 23rd with a release show at The Columbus Theater in Providence. Lovesick and Cannibal Ramblers will open the show.