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The Moms

Doing Asbestos We Can

Bar None Records
By

Rating: 4/5

 
 

 

 

Just over twelve months ago The Moms released the excellent Snowbird EP, a release that made a big impression on me last year and ended up being one of my favourite singles of 2016, so to say I was pleased when Doing Asbestos We Can arrived for review is something of an understatement, but as always there is also a sense of trepidation that relates to a release that follows up on something that bordered on perfection, have The Moms maintained the impetus they were building with release of Snowbird last year? 

Good Job picks up where Snowbird left off with a hook laden riff, and Fortunate Former carries on the upbeat knockabout feel, that even has brass added, courtesy of Ciaran O’Donnell of The Front Bottoms, to underline the playful feel. Doing Asbestos We Can doesn’t have the rough appeal that Snowbird carried, but it’s been replaced with something almost as appealing, there’s a more poppy sensibility to the debut full length, but this isn’t at the expense of the infectious hooks and energy that are still ever present throughout the album. Alongside their obvious punk rock roots there are other elements that have been thrown into mix including rock ‘n roll, on  the short and sweet Rock The Boat. and a pervading indie sensibility, and for me there seems to be a distinctly retro feel to the production on the album.

Doing Asbestos We Can feels more polished, the rough edges that were present on Snowbird have been smoothed out and there’s a slightly poppier feel, Whilst their sophomore full length doesn’t grab you with the knockabout charm that Snowbird possessed they re still a band that possess their DIY credentials, the album’s title relates to the fact that they still rehearse in a basement where the pipes are insulated with asbestos, but instead of the hard driving punk rock The Moms have taken a detour that comes across as an amalgamation of styles, it might be a change in direction but everyone knows that The Moms know best, and the end result is a fine, if not unexpected, sophomore album.

Doing Asbestos Be Can will be released on the 13th October and can be ordered via Bar None Records here

The Front Bottoms Announces New EP

Front BottomsNew Jersey’s The Front Bottoms has announced details for a new EP.  The EP will be titled Rose and is set for a June 17, 2014 release via Bar/None Records.  The band describes the tracks as “songs that we’ve either played live at shows or had kicking around that we couldn’t let go of.”  The disc will follow their latest album, Talon of the Hawk, released in 2013 via Bar/None Records.

The band will be touring extensively this with Say AnythingThe So So Glos and Your Blew It! summer.  Dates are below.

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The Front Bottoms - Talon of the hawk

The Front Bottoms

Talon of the Hawk

Bar None Records
By

Rating: 4.5/5

 
 

 

 

If there’s one thing I’m a sucker for, it’s simplicity. That, and songs I can relate to. The Front Bottoms’ latest effort Talon of the Hawk perfectly encompasses both of those things, and before I start, I do want it to go on record that I’m calling this a strong contender for #3 at least in my end of year list. 

Amusingly so, Talon of the Hawk is kicked off with a track that doesn’t even stretch to two minutes in length. However, Au Revoir – Adios manages to set the bar for the entire album. Brian Sella’s strained vocals and raw lyricism against very little music tell of a failed relationship, but refreshingly so, the cliché of this story is averted with the introduction of a full band effort midway through shouting about Rock n’ Roll and being misunderstood which hooks you in, in a way that only The Front Bottoms know how.

From there, the casual narrative doesn’t let up as Sella begins to bear all, and whilst his partner Matt Uychich does incredibly well to provide a steady beat to his band mate’s musings and the session musicians work relentlessly to provide a juxtaposing noise of jingling guitars and soft keyboard interludes, Sella’s lyricism feels like it could also work on its own as a spoken word piece. It tells of highs and lows, from Skeleton pulling on your heart strings as you remember every failed relationship and fuck up, to Twin Size Mattress pulling the pace back to an almost stand-still. It’s at this point that the band really comes together, and since up to now it’s been The Brian Sella Show, the track details the importance of friendship and pursuing everything you want to do, and it quickly becomes clear that no matter how you’re feeling, The Front Bottoms have a track to match it.

But after the calm comes the danceable indie-pop storm and with vocal styling that would give Blink 182’s Tom DeLonge a run for his money and catchy guitar riffs that should be the soundtrack to your summer, Talon of the Hawk just goes from strength to strength. There’s not much to it really, you don’t really have to sit and think about the lyrics, there’s no ambiguity, and with the likes of The Feud and Backflip proving that this whole album is nothing but a guy telling a series of anecdotes whilst his band mates regularly provide indistinguishable backing chants and 2005-style keyboard sequences.

Granted, The Front Bottoms may not be anywhere near performing in front of thousands of people on a huge stage with these kind of songs, but who cares? Give me a dingy bar, a disgusting beer and a few of my closest friends to sing along to this with over that any day. It’s important to recognise that Talon of the Hawk is a much bigger, more ambitious effort than 2011’s eponymous debut. There’s a fine blend of mature lyricism, and downright fun musical experimentation and if nothing else, this record should make you want to say ‘fuck it.’

Tour: The Front Bottoms (UK)

thefrontbottoms_by_Lucia_Holm_PhotographyNJ Indie dance-punks The Front Bottoms have announced they will be crossing the atlantic to tour the UK in September. The band are out supporting their latest full length, The Talon Of The Hawk (check out our review here) which was released back in May via Bar None Records.

Full dates below:

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