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P.J. HARVEY Uh Huh Her ****


Despite her claims to the contrary, Uh Huh Her seems to land fans splat back into the twisted, maze-y, inexplicably addictive Everglades of P.J. Harvey’s midnight-hued psyche. It’s about time! Stories From the City, Stories From the Sea was just a bit too optimistic, not to mention slickly produced. Straight outta her home-studio eight-track, Polly Jean dishes up a sweet-tasting meal (laced with poison for her wayward lover, of course) of soft-spoken yet hypnotic melodies most reminiscent of Is This Desire? (Island)


SPARTA Porcelain ****


Some bands know how to write songs, and other bands know the very language of music. Sparta’s among the latter: Porcelain’s riffs spill into one another, eddying and rippling in subterranean caverns while remaining one connected, flowing body. “While Oceana Sleeps,” with its neo-melodic, arpeggio-ed guitar lines and swaying choruses, is as delicate and beautiful as china. Sparta possess too big of a soul to be regularly shoehorned into the emo category. (Geffen)


CANDIRIA What Doesn’t Kill You **


So Candiria got in a van accident and it was really traumatizing, blah blah blah—is that any reason to make it the centerpiece of their new album? It smacks of insincerity and manipulation. The music itself is flawlessly executed but overrated and strangely dead amidst a frenzy of strained screaming; Candiria are doing nothing different from the sea of pretentious math metal/emocore imitators out there except for the occasional hip-hop breakdown. (Type A)


THE GAMITS Antidote **


There’s nothing terribly wrong, sour, damaged or bitter about The Gamits, and maybe that’s the problem. They’re not remiss enough to merit a spanking, but they’re not good enough to merit a sundae with a cherry on top. Their three-chord, straightforward indie rock with a U.K. punk edge is moderately mundane, merely mediocre. You might catch yourself yawning and thinking about your bills after yet another unchanging track. (Suburban Home)


TOMATOHEAD Punch *


Making fun of Tomatohead is about as satisfying as shouting at a lost child in a supermarket: “Hey, why don’t you ask customer service to page your mom, brat! Oh yeah, you can’t read! Ha ha!” or saying to an overweight girl, “Man, you’re so fat your blood type must be Ragu!” It’s better that Tomatohead remain innocently unaware of how deadly lame their nü-metal/punk mutt really is, or they might just shoot themselves. (GCG)

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About The Author

Rebecca Vernon

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