Music Reviews

Tora! Tora! Torrance!

A Cynic’s Nightmare

The Militia Group

Incongruously, the artists Tora! Tora! Torrance! remind me of most are an early version of Devo, say just before the electronics started getting piled on thick (AKA before they got better, in my view). A hard rock/punk revivalist group from Minneapolis, TTT consists of Travis Even on bass, Nick Koenigs on drums and vocals, Jesse Panzer on drums, and Jon Tester on guitar. Koenigs’ vocals are shouted and snotty, like a whiny child (but in this genre, that’s a compliment) with virtually the only distinguishable lyrics coming in the CD-opening “Yr All on Our Dance Card.” And even there the decipherable lyrics are “Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! What? What? What?” They Might Be Giants do not tremble at Tora! Tora! Torrance!’s playful lyricism.

Playing is good, although the songs are in danger of falling into the stylistic trap of same-ness (and giving less dedicated listeners such as myself a headache) before the disc is half through.

Tora! Tora! Torrance! themselves are good, but that doesn’t mean I’m going to be listening to their album very much – I like my punk a little more post and my alternative pop to rock. But getting past that, I can hear that this is a pretty good example of the style, well played and written.

I guess what I’m saying is that if you like this kind of playing more than I do, and don’t care about being able to tell what a singer is saying, you’ll probably love this album. But even if you don’t and you do, respectively, you might want to check this CD out anyway. It’s not like it’s gonna reach into your record collection and break your Kenny Loggins CDs or nothin’.

The Militia Group:

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