ENDS, THE: New Rome: 7″

The Ends are one of my favorite new bands, but I don’t think this is my favorite single by them. Perhaps I’m crazy, but the recording on the a-side is a tad too hot for my liking. It’s almost like someone’s subliminally crinkling aluminum foil in the background. It’s not crackly, but it sounds tinny and it’s hard to crank the volume up on. The title track plays it really close to the Stitches’ “Brain’s on Vacation,” especially in the mid-tempos and vocal delivery (snot, whine, sneer, and if a striped shirt could make a sound). I like it when The Ends eviscerate while admiring bands of the past, like when they covered Eater and Elvis Costello. “Saw It Coming,” the b-side, is better, and does just that – conjures up some of the ghosts of the past while offering a row of freshly poured shots. “Saw It Coming” has got the elbowroom, swagger, and bounce that shows how good the Ends can be. Still, a 50/50 7” from this band is definitely not a throwaway and is better than ninety-eight percent of the stuff out there. 

 –todd (Dirtnap)