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Guiltmaker
Driven By Arms
Kiss Of Death Records
www.myspace.com/guiltmaker


Guiltmaker band vocals, shared by Dan Radde and Shaun Drees, are oftentimes combined to sound something like Jane's Addiction's Perry Farrell and his unusual front man urgency. Driven By Arms is a short 'n sour EP from this Tampa, FL rock group. Its members have hardcore roots, although this effort finds it moving in a more post-punk direction, with Jawbox and Quicksand counted as influences.

EPs are to be measured by a popular potato chip slogan: they ought to dare you to eat just one. If they pass, you'll want a whole bag. However, if they fail, you'll walk away having barely disturbed the surface of the dip dish. Guiltmaker, unfortunately, fails at this simple EP quiz. Granted, its music is not as embarrassing as George Costanza double-dipping his chip at a funeral in that notable Seinfeld episode. But it won't turn you into a hopeless snacking fiend, either. Four samples are quite enough, thank you.

The biggest problem with Driven By Arms is that these songs urgently reach out for the listener, yet fail to grab and hold them tight. They're missing that GI Joe kung fu grip or something. There are plenty of emotive guitar parts, sitting side-saddle with equally expressive vocals, and while each element is talking a lot, so to speak, they're not really saying too much. Guiltmaker isn't making anybody sorry for their sins. Heck, it isn't even a guilty pleasure. Instead, it is like a potato chip that is easily avoidable. Such party pooper carbohydrates nearly force you to nibble on green vegetables, instead.

-Dan MacIntosh

Track listing:
1. Connected
2. Silent Eyes
3. The Current
4. Mark The Walls


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