I Saw a Bright Light
Nineteen Forty-five are sort of an anachronism these days. Hailing from Athens, GA there’s more than just a little R.E.M. jangle thrown into this decidedly “alternative” rock. Other ’90s filching include: Pavement’s scream singing routed through a blown Pixies’ boy-girl speaker. This album sounds old, and by “old” I mean “dated.” Not that this is necessarily a bad thing. “The Police Let Her Get Away” and “Make Out in the Dark” are two of the catchiest songs all the Replacements-loving power-pop bands forgot to write back in 1995.
“Someday I’ll End it All” boasts the most brutal opening verse I’ve heard in recent memory: “I’d paint the walls bright red/with a gun and my head/if I thought that it would send me to you.” Backed with a skittering, nervous acoustic guitar and strung out cello notes, it’s definitely the most beautiful and disturbing track on the album.
Bands this close to nostalgia rock are an odd breed. It just depends on how you take them: as derivation because of lack of new ideas or as a return to a well-worn, comfortable musical style. Nineteen Forty-five fall firmly into the latter. I certainly don’t mind the death of mid-’90s music, but I also don’t mind if there is a band or two out there still making the same sounds. Just no revivals, please.