BLACK BLACKS, THE: AR-15: CD-R

Brisk and punchy thud-punk. Musically, there’s a whole lotta boom-bap drums and time-honored, rock-simple (but effective!) chord progressions that carry some significant weight. I liked that aspect of AR-15for sure. However, the main vocalist has a pretty deep singing voice, which lends the whole affair a kind of unwittingly melodramatic air to it. (Then again, maybe it’s intentional: the biggest misstep here is the song “Scream, Baby, Scream,” with its awkward doo-wop ‘50s undertones, which makes the band sound like a fourth rate aping of Mourning Noise or the Misfits.) Also of note: multiple mentions of graveyards, séances, death-by-scissors, and at least three different songs about shooting people. Hence the title, I guess? Musically solid, reasonably sketchy in the lyrics department, and way too dramatic in the vocals. Fair to middling effort, as my old grandpappy would say. 

 –keith (The Black Blacks)