Laughing Outlaw Records

On their debut album, Ugly, Australia trio Tongues sound as if they could be the Down-Under’s version of Hole, which is actually a good thing. The opening track, “Peculiar,” is full of reverb and other extracurricular guitar noises. Lead singer Cate Dahl sounds like she could be Courtney Love’s long lost sister. This could easily be an outtake from Live Through This.

The next track, “Velveteen,” has more of a Celebrity Skin feel to it, with a straight-ahead pop-rock sound combined with some of the worst lyrics to come from Australia: “You piss in my mind/I shit on in your face.” I know they’re trying to be a middle-finger-wagging, rule-breaking band and all, but come on. I’ve heard better lyrics from Good Charlotte. It does, however, get much better.

“Something Passionate” combines a complex drum beat with wickedly distorted guitars that invite a two-minute mosh pit to start up … even if you’re the only one moshing. It must be done.

Throughout Ugly, Tongues do a good job of diversifying the sound from straight radio-friendly tracks like “Dazed” and “Be You” to gritty pissed-off anthems like “Wanna-Be” and “Go Your Way.” If you’ve been waiting for a new Hole album to come out, keep waiting. But while you wait, pick up Ugly. I guarantee that you won’t be disappointed.


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