Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Gold Sounds: We Versus the Shark "Dirty Versions" album review

I was in the middle of writing a pretty long (and long overdue) review of We Versus the Shark's newest album, but then my computer messed up and I lost it all. Here's the abbreviated version:

We live in a time of cultural stagnation, with music being no exception, what with the majority of up-and-coming bands aping rock bands of yore (and very few of them worth your time, in this reviewer's humble opinion). In this climate, it's good to know that some musicians are more concerned with creating new, unique, and interesting music, We Versus the Shark among them. Have you ever heard anything as intense as opener "Hello Blood?" The blistering track starts immediately at full force and doesn't let up for its 2:46 duration. Exhilarating? Check. Inventive? Check (Oh, the time changes. Oh, the dual guitar lines). Listenable? Check, and that's the most important check of all; We Versus manage to avoid completely alienating the listener while treating them to something totally original. The album's not without its faults (lyrics/vocals occasionally seem like an afterthought, last track "Practical Animals" falls victim to some questionable mixing decisions, and a certain track-to-track cohesion is somewhat lacking) but it's loud, it's frantic, it's inventive, and yeah, it's dirty. What could be better?

Rating: 9/11. Key Tracks: "Hello Blood," "Dogs," "Gothic Y'all," "Keep it Wolf." Also, numerical ratings are kind of silly, don't you think?

Listen to We Versus the Shark live here. It's a high quality bootleg that's worth your time. All but the first and last song are featured on Dirty Versions, and they sound just as good live as they do on compact disc. Of course, the two non-Dirty Versions tracks are also worth a listen.

The more traditional route: Myspace

1 comment:

The Shanghai Revolutionary said...

Hey! Another review finally. I was wondering where you went. I'm working on a review of the new Sea and Cake album hopefully to be published this week.