CRITICS, THE: Self-titled: 7″

Holy moly. From the cover, I wasn’t expecting much. It’s a pink and black bitmap of four band members without faces. Ho hum. But, as soon as it got played, who went ahead and turned Leatherface into a straight-ahead pop band from Australia with tons of power? I wasn’t so up on their CDEP, but these three songs are complexly layered as some sort of a fancy Greek desert and as unpredictable as fireworks with questionable fuses. Maybe it’s my ass talking, but I also hear some of the undeniable songwriting and prowess of The Replacements: wall of warm shimming guitars, stinging belt choruses, rising welt bass lines, and strong-piped vocals that are a notch below yelling. It all sounds so loud but clear and confident as fuck. I was wholly surprised by how good this was. Well worth seeking out.

 –todd (Rabbit / Out of the Loop)