Classic 80ís is in vogue. The time is ripe for a band like
Blueline Medic who can slip between nostalgics and
unsuspecting emophiliacs. The scrubbing and jangling guitar-work
and loosely structured tuneage is inline with 80ís Britpop
like Wedding Present and Wonderstuff. Dureau
sings with a pleasantly gravely voice that will appeal to
fans of Psychedelic Furs with some Smiths intonations.
This is a record that everyone can love and enjoy, in that
the content is passionate without demanding your full attention.
Itís great background, or you can close your eyes and let
the nuances envelop you. The lyrics are intriguing snips of
stories left to be pieced together like bits of overheard
conversation. Any rhymes are purely coincidental or occurring
only as convenient. These Australians like to use several
tones per song, so if thereís something not quite to your
liking it will change.
If I have any complaints on "Cathedral", itís lack
of ingenuity on the drums. At points the cymbal is relentlessly
molested, but the rumbling breaks are redeeming. The guitars
take on an occasional jazzy swerve like Dada with an
energetic and desperate feel. Dureau pushes his voice over
phrases like, How should it matter being better held together?
The rains have proved as only they can more for faith than
mortar. These fragments are fitted like the rough-hewn
stones with a Paul Weller quality. "Over The Lawn"
rides staccato reggae guitar through syncopated drums. The
riddle is generally more interesting than the music. The metaphor
of shouts running Over the lawn and like an army under
the door, slow advancing sticks in the gray matter. Snowís
bass is more evident in "Making The Nouveau Riche"
The subtle smirks amidst the barbs feel good like a less defined
Jam. Dureauís choice of lopsided phrases allows his
voice to dance crisply on the song. The waltzy "At Least
We Had The War" is sentimental and basically follows
a Morrisey singsong vocal line without the warbling.
The drums fall into a train track rhythm at the apex. The
vocals on "Not Interested" seem even more constrained
by the music. Instead of riding over the notes, Dureau is
forced to stretch notes to meet the end. Itís suffocating
and almost shaming the way they carry on, you would think,
he sings rightfully. "Shuffle And Scrape" is low
and sly spy music that accelerates into a soaring chorus.
Itís a hopeful exhilaration that comes flying out of the frustration.
Add to that the bonus of hearing the cleverly placed word
matter. This is the most stirring song on the record. Lohoar
still has a tendency to rattle the cymbal even though heís
shown thrilling work on other parts of the drum kit. In fact,
on "Somnambulist" he finds lots of interesting things
to hit in a very pleasing manner. The acoustic work is like
adding balls to the Lilac Time. Dureau sings smoothly
this time, and gives fewer clues as to the subject. Perhaps
this was all that remained of the waking dream. Regardless,
this is one of those rare songs that leaves you wishing it
had carried on.
A more modest piece is "Up Against The Fault" with
a smaller build on a more staid platform. When Dureau turns
up the gas, itís a voice that could cut pipe. The textured
meandering of "Write Us" is more memorable. The
frenetic Wedding Present scrubbing war gives way to
almost a march. Unclear if it concerns us press folks, or
some other form of lowlife in the lines, Complainants have
been few and far between, the idiotic close and many.
The dynamics revolve and re-energize as the vocals gear up
for another round. The way the pieces of "Cheat"
are linked together reminds me of the Putrid Flowersí
epic. Just when you think itís going to end, thereís something
more to be said in a raised intensity. It speeds and slows,
regaining its momentum with a few extra riders along the way.
Thereís a little surf guitar, some well-placed studio effects
and an impression that this tune would have worked well at
any speed. As a closing comedown song, "Welcome Paradox"
is the emo-est number offered. Thereís a floating bit of Gloria
Record in the vocal line, with the sort of Unrest
speed-ups as the vocals keep an even pace while the strums
and drums are doubled up. It is a sweet thing as a breather.
On a scale bad Halloween costumes, one being Fairuza Balk
and ten being Osama Bin Laden, The Apology Wars
gets a rating of eight: Oxana Baiul.
Complaints Dept: Ducky still doesnít have a date to
ó Ewan Wadharmi
- Over The Lawn
- Making The Nouveau Riche
- At Least We Had The War
- Not Interested
- Shuffle And Scrape
- Up Against The Fault
- Write Us
- The Cheat
- Welcome Paradox
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