Sign up for our newsletters   

Baltimore City Paper home.

music Home > Record Reviews

Know Your Product

Urban Development Series Vol. 4

: Urban Development Series Vol. 4

Label:AmBiguous City Records
Release Date:2001
Genre:Indie Rock

By Bret McCabe | Posted 7/17/2002 6:00:00 PM

This spunky quartet crafts cookie-cutter power-pop/punk that pulses with a pep rally of mirthful guitar lines. This quirky chug comes complete with thumping bass-and-drums action that sounds like it's little more than a peg for guitarist/vocalist Charly Jamison's beating-heart-on-sleeve lyrics. That wouldn't be so distracting if they didn't sound so instantly recognizable. LandSpeedRecord! specializes in hook-filled nuggets that are monstrously catchy while they're playing and instantly forgetful the moment they're past. But it sounds like Jamison may have heard this complaint before. On "Best Revenge," LSP!'s best outing from a new split release with New Jersey's Prosolar Mechanics on local label AmBiguous City!, he proclaims, "I believe the best revenge/ is to pick myself back up again." OK. Go for it.

On the Prosolar Mechanics half of the disc, what deceptively sounds like basic angular new wave is something a bit more intriguing. Amy Jacobs' vocals swim eel-like through the din, bounding between soft and rough. She seethes a nice-ugly screed that recalls early-'80s post-punk: Languid bass and staccato drums provide the winding spine off which guitarist Alex Saville's textural work radiates. It's the sort of arty affair that San Diego's Swell Maps-leaning Gogogo Airheart and San Francisco's girl gnarl Erase Errata have been cranking out with a bit more gusto. But PSM sounds like it's still feeling out its approach, with room to grow.

E-mail Bret McCabe

Comments powered by Disqus
CP on Facebook
CP on Twitter