Music Reviews

The Black Halos

The Violent Years

Sub Pop

Listen, don’t believe the hype. I believe the hype all too often. Most of the time, I’m a total mark at heart. I want to have faith in bands, I want to join the loving throngs who hail the next great rock and roll salvation. So I hear about The Black Halos. I see some pictures. I’m impressed. A pretty good approximation of gutter scuzz punk glam perfection. Neat trick. I hear some reference points bandied around. Someone mentions the Stooges. Suddenly I’m very interested, indeed. Now The Violent Years is out of my eager hands and into my stereo, and what do I hear? How about a dog-average punk/pop outfit with a vocalist that sounds suspiciously like that guy out of Rhino Bucket? Yeah, that’s not what I wanted to hear, either. No danger. No blood. No other bodily fluids or scars. Borrrrrrrrrrrrring. I’m sure they are quite serviceable as a live band, but the record is listless and uninspired. There’s a crappy Joy Division/Warsaw cover in there, if you care to look. Fuck, does the Sub Pop label mean nothing any more? Labels, pfffffft.

Sub Pop, PO Box 20645, Seattle, WA 98102, http://www.subpop.com

Matthew Moyer


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