Houston, We Have a Drinking Problem
Well, this is certainly one of the most clever band name/album concept combos I’ve seen in a while. There’s a little smashed space man on the cover, crashed out but not spilling a drop of his martini even though he has those cute little X’s instead of regular eyeballs. Inside the cover we find a seven-man West Coast band with a surprisingly narrow sound for a large group, a group that make a dark brooding sound of layered guitars and drums backing complex brooding songs about the favorite topic of every rock band, failed romance. That’s one of the ironies of music — a lot of guys get into a band for the chicks, and then end up whining when they leave. But I digress. While the tunes are a bit late night Saturday college radio, the lyrics are worth a listen if you can tease them out of the dense background. Of course, the handy booklet with neatly printed low contrast type helps here. Such lines as “All I want is another second chance” (“Another Dead Romance”) are indicative of the theme of failed romance, loneliness and despair that make this disc a must have for a serious break up or even just a really bad head cold. There are times when you just don’t want to feel good, and here is the disc to stick on auto repeat while you down that third bottle of Robitussin. Just remember, tomorrow will come and you’ll still feel like crap. But you’ll still have Bad Astronaut to keep you company.