PYONGYANG METRO, THE: Tower of White Tigers: CD

The Pyongyang Metro sound like an even more rocking version of their town’s better-known melodic punk heroes, Dillinger Four. The hard-edged vocals keep it from falling into simple pop punk categorization, with all of the songs rushing ahead at breakneck speed for melodic punk. Pyongyang Metro is made up of former or current members of esteemed bands like Off With Their Heads and Rivethead. The songs all have witty titles and highbrow lyrics, with “New Hindi Ringtones Now Available,” “Nobel Laureate,” and “Escape Helper” being good examples. It’s not quite great enough to make me long for a trip to the Midwest, but it comes damn close.

 –Art Ettinger (Arsenic)