Listen Up: Wednesday, November 07, 2002
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
A D V E R T I S E M E N T
Brasco

sings tunes the young people will enjoy (APG Records)

By Ken Shimamoto

After a yearlong absence from the local stage, Brasco is back with a vengeance and, more to the point, a five-song e.p. At their Dallas Liquid Lounge c.d. release party not too long ago, they performed while decked out in matching dark suits. Mavericks for the new millennium?

Occasionally tarred with the same “alt-country” brush as Woodeye (to whom Brasco holds a tenuous connection based on guitarist Jared Blair’s one-time membership in Crinkleroot with Woodeye’s Scott Davis), Brasco is, well, a rock band, albeit one that favors minor-key songs with lots of chord changes. The action centers on frontman Kevin Aldridge’s songs and high-register vocals, which might reasonably be compared to Roy Orbison, Neil Young without the warble, or even, uh, Raul Malo. (So maybe the Mavericks comparison isn’t totally spurious.)

Having pared the lineup down to just two guitars, the band has acquired a more spacious sound, aided in a couple of places here by Doug Polhamus of Alan on keyboards. Blair contributes fills and solos that decorate the songs in much the same way as his ex-bandmate Davis does in Woodeye.

Highlights range from the crunching fanfare of “Take” (note the multi-textured guitars; Radiohead influence firmly in place) to the churning bass figure that underpins “Fault” to the Neil Youngian angst fest of “Journal of Burden,” which contains the memorable line, “Everybody’s trying to change me / Milligram by milligram.”

On the closing “Anastasia,” a great two-note stoopid-rock riff quickly gives way to a soaring melody before Blair’s ascending octaves take it even higher. Pick to click: “Slow,” which features an infectious singalong chorus that would sound great on the radio running back from Dallas to Fort Worth at 3 a.m.


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