Centro-Matic - All the Falsest Hearts Can Try
Quality Park Records

Although this is my least favorite Centro-Matic album, it's far
superior to most of the garbage out there.  And at a rate eclipsed only by
that forty year old dude from Ohio, this stands to be their first of three
releases this year.  For the amount of material they write it's surprising
that they can stay so fresh and vital from release to release.  But didn't
you know? Will Johnson is the new songwriting savior of the indie scene in
America.  Over the last five or so years, he's cranked out hundreds of
songs for the (un)expecting masses.  Unfortunately, he hasn't gotten a
whole lot of attention for his work.  Chalk it up to Texas isolation or
the lack of a major tour, but for the most part people are pretty
oblivious to them.  That being said, with more records like this (who
here is going to doubt that they probably have 50 songs ready to be
recorded and released right now?) and a tour with the Promise Ring and
Burning Airlines in their pocket, they seem ready to to ditch the
shackles of indie snobbery and move into their own.

For the mass of uninitiated, this is some of the most heartfelt indie rock out there. Fuck emo. All that watered down bullshit can't hold a candle to this stuff. Successfully mixing slow jams and more upbeat fuzzy rock and roll, they pound through fourteen songs all unified by Johnson's lazy-vocaled delivery. Talk about crying in your beer, this guy personifies it. With a borderline country drawl, he wails over the music and rocks you to sleep at the same time. His vocal power sets these songs so far apart from the standared indie/emo/alternawhatever band out there. There's just absolutely no reason why they should be so unknown still. Thankfully, I hopped on the Centro-Matic fan wagon fairly early on and haven't been saddled with the unenviable task of picking up their entire back catalog at one time, because let me assure you, that's what you'll do when you hear this stuff. Seriously catchy and heartfelt indie-rock. Burn your Guided by Voices records (you probably can't tell the songs apart anyway) and torch the indie rock elite while you're at it. All hail the new chief.
...david smith...

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