Ink battles in broad strokes

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The Broadheds debut is self-titled and it's an advance from dear old Dangerbird Records due out on April 9. It's four guys from Hell-A playing ska/punk rock - quickly, too - there's 13 songs in about 30 minutes. 

The raggedy rockers, "Nothing I Care About" and "Was There Really Any Chance?" should put them in solid with the party people and the reggae tunes will resonate with those that smoked their lunches. And "I'm A Wreck" could be a Rhett Miller song, once upon a time, the saddest man with wrists yet unslit. 

A solid debut from a fun band.

The latest from the Civil Wars is from 2011 but I just got a copy of "Barton Hollow" on Sensibility Music. In any case, if you like beautiful low tech harmonies - here it is. A guy and a gal, sometimes a cello - a perfect fusion of vocals, but too many of these sound the same and don't really go anywhere. It's all very poised and proper - but not a lot to get excited about, with an obvious exception being "Poison and Wine," itself unlikely to incite little more than a nod of approval from fans. If wars were this mellow, no one would die.

The debut from Inc. is "No World" and it's on 4AD, a good year for the first Roman emperor, Augustus, who still had a decade left to rule his vast empire. Inc. is two brothers, Andrew and Daniel Aged and their mechanical friends. The brief description on the label's website contains this descriptive nugget " once declarative and quietly poetic." 

They guys are way mellow and any mosh pit would consist of sleepy ghosts in their pajamas. In other words, Europeans, perhaps because they have been around for so much longer, possess a subtlety generally not found in most Americans. This is mellow enough to approach the dreaded muzak and may, in fact, face a future as the soundtrack on the frozen food aisle at the supermarket.

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Rockin' Roll Call
Bill Locey reviews music for the Ventura County Star, when he isn't reenacting the history of this great nation or teaching it to incarcerated youth.
He is the tall guy lurking in the back of all the local rock shows.
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