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Wires in the Walls
The North Atlantic
1. Lotus Eater, The
2. Drunk Under Electrics
3. Swallow Fire
4. Man Who Saved Your Ass, The
5. Scientist Girl
6. Bottom of This Town
7. Street Sweepers
8. Atmosphere vs the Dogs of Dawn
10. Swallows Air
11. Ministry of Helicopters, The
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 006
Jason Clark; Jason Clark; The North Atlantic
Jason Clark; Rob Dennler
Personnel: Justin Rodriguez, Mitch Harris, Ryan Smith (vocals); Jason Hendrix (guitar, keyboards); Jason Richards (keyboards); Cullen Hendrix (percussion).
Audio Mixer: Ben Moore.
Recording information: Audio Design, San Diego, CA; Big Fish Studios, San Diego, CA.
The North Atlantic initially bring out a full-frontal sonic assault that brings to mind the MC5, the Strokes and even the Offspring. Led by singer and songwriter Jason Hendrix, songs like the bruising, brash and in-your-face "The Lotus Eater" hit you in the gut immediately with a punchy garage feeling yet with an airtight rhythm section. Rowdy and chock-full of energy, the North Atlantic shines on "Drunk Under Electrics" which avoids the emo tag and heads more into the direction of bands like Burning Brides. A great series of short choppy licks follow, sounding like a tamer cross of Metallica and Primus. From there, the band is just as crisp and polished with "Swallow Fire," which has a lot in common with the Mars Volta or At the Drive-In. The best thing about the song is how raw the tune comes off despite having no ragged edges whatsoever. The bouncy, head-bobbing "The Man Who Saved Your Ass" is eerily similar to an early single the Cure might have thought of putting out at one time but didn't. The first song that could be considered pop/rock is the midtempo, hi-hat friendly, middle-finger salute to an ex-girlfriend titled "Scientist Girl" that works on many levels. Another asset Wires in the Walls has is how it never takes a break or gives the listener any filler. A great example of this is the downbeat electro-pop nugget "Bottom of This Town" that easily brings the Killers to mind. The home stretch contains two longer pieces beginning with the slow, plodding "Atmosphere vs. the Dogs of Dawn" that is soft then hard, slow then fast. It's almost like some sort of homage to classic '70s hard rock. Following a quirky rock-cum-ska ditty called "Swallows Air," the North Atlantic conclude with "The Ministry of Helicopters," a decent but not spectacular finale. Nonetheless, the duo has made an extremely strong, appealing debut. ~ Jason MacNeil
Alternative Press (p.210) - "[T]he way the band fuse their influences is what makes their sound so compelling. Songs pause and stutter, delay-driven guitars squall and instrumental ambience dissolves into chaos -- and back again."
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