BARRIO TIGER: Laugh Now, Cry Later: 12” EP

Los Angeles’s underground has seen an uptick in recent years of punk bands with a deep rock streak running through ‘em, and vice-versa, some of it good ‘n’ some that make you wanna step outside to chat with friends old and new until whoever’s onstage stops whatever it is they’re doin’. Barrio Tiger is definitely a high point, a band that puts well more than the requisite amount of energy and oomph into their live shows and, based on the six songs here, their studio work. They’re definitely vibing on the usual New York via Detroit influences, but what could easily fall into the same ol’ same ol’ rut gets a solid kick in the ass courtesy of some rock solid songwriting, diversity, and drawing from influences outside the bubble—just when you think you’ve got ‘em pegged, up jumps a poppy punk tune (albeit with roaring dual/duel guitars) and a slower jam flecked with country. Some mighty fine work here from one of the better local bands making the rounds.

 –jimmy (Barrio Tiger, myspace.com/gentlemencallers)