Author Archives

Rob Browning

Winter Hours

While Winter Hours is staunchly abrasive, if you listen closely, there are definite filigrees of melody throughout. Little sonic oases like “The Great Silence” offer small periods of respite with clean guitar and more atmospheric tones, but this is not a record for the faint of heart. Winter Hours is definitely not going to be the soundtrack for your next holiday gathering. read more »

POSTED May 18, 2009 12:51PM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , , , ,


Equal parts soulful croon and raging bombast, Singlewide makes every song seem like one you’ve sung along to a million times. If they have any say in the matter, Dexateens will have you sing along a million times more. read more »

POSTED April 29, 2009 11:34AM IN THE TRIPWIRE Comments (4) TAGS: , , , , , , ,

Keep Your Soul: A Tribute To Doug Sahm

Doug Sahm’s passing left a huge hole in Texas music, whether it be Tejano, R&B, Blues or some combination of the three. To commemorate his life and body of work, Vanguard Records has released Keep Your Soul: A Tribute To Doug Sahm. Rarely has there been a better mix of contemporaries and collaborators. read more »

POSTED April 24, 2009 11:48AM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , , ,

Red Fang

All of the metal planets have aligned on Red Fang. If you consider yourself a fan of heavy music, it would be impossible for you to not like this record. Each track has a barbarian swagger that doesn’t ignore the fact that while we are basically evolved apes, we’re not dumb apes. Check the average Red Fang crowd maybe four beers into their set and tell me you don’t see evidence of Darwinism. read more »

POSTED April 20, 2009 11:29AM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , , , , , , ,

Thank You For Your Patience

Like their neighbors in D.C., Richmond is a capital city with a crime rate as high as its median income is low. It’s a city just Southern enough to rankle politically correct Northerners, but such ‘old world’ sensibilities are juxtaposed against the fact that the fairer-complected old guard is very much a minority. Both groups have embraced the epochal “give me liberty or give me death” proclamation that rang through the city so many years previously, displaying an uneasy tendency towards the latter in recent years. While Richmond is hardly the Gaza Strip, it breeds a tension in the city that you can feel in bands like Mouthbreather. read more »

POSTED April 13, 2009 12:42PM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: ,

The Shaking Hands

The eleven songs on The Shaking Hands pass in under a half hour, but you get a bumper crop of whoa-oh and gang vocal parts in that time. Breakdowns and syncopated vocal parts are in full effect, tailor-making most of the tunes for PBR-fueled beardo sing-a-longs from Gainesville to San Diego. With their self-titled debut, these sons of the Sunshine State come correct with the music and the message. read more »

POSTED April 1, 2009 3:36PM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , ,


In recent years, Appleseed Cast have been incorporating more electronic elements into their music, embracing a Minus The Bear sound replete with loops and sampling. A bit of a Death Cab fixation features prominently as well. Similarities aside, from where I’m sitting Sagarmatha is the best Appleseed Cast release yet, rarely boring and splitting the difference nicely between the electronic and the organic. read more »

POSTED March 30, 2009 5:03PM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , , ,

Spoils Of Failure

It’s been four years since their Relapse debut, but Buried Inside has not been idle in that time. Few bands have lasted as long or progressed as much with each release. Their Ottawa bailiwick puts them in the same camp of bands like Germany’s equally stunning Daturah that don’t see much of a presence stateside, but this record is well worth searching out. If you like your metal progressive musically as well as politically, the Spoils Of Failure may very well be your gain. read more »

POSTED March 18, 2009 4:39PM IN THE TRIPWIRE TAGS: , ,

Robbers On High Street, Jukebox The Ghost, Takka Takka, Lowry @ The Music Hall Of Williamsburg | Brooklyn

Guilt By Association is the brainchild of Peter Block of Engine Room Recordings where up-and-coming indie bands cover 80s and 90s hits. The first volume featured artists as diverse as Superchunk and Devendra Barnhart and got a lot of notice, hence part 2, curated by Wesley Verhoeve. The Music Hall Of Williamsburg show was the first of two release shows featuring artists from GBA Vol. 2 and chocolate from local purveyors Mast Brothers. read more »

POSTED February 3, 2009 5:10PM IN THE TRIPWIRE Comments (1) TAGS: ,

Jason Isbell And The 400 Unit

Jason Isbell has been quick to point out that the new self-titled release is a band record, which may account for the eponym. The 400 Unit sounds a lot more cohesive; even more so it sounds relaxed. Isbell co-produced the record with Centro-matic‘s Matt Pence in between road dates. In listening to the eleven tracks, there is no question that this is a Muscle Shoals record. While the debut may have been tainted by the dark days of the A Blessing And A Curse-era Drive By Truckers, The 400 Unit finds Isbell rejuvenated and eager to move on. read more »

POSTED January 20, 2009 5:58PM IN THE TRIPWIRE Comments (7) TAGS: