SHARK SANDWICH – Fast Album Reviews for Those on the Go
March 9, 2018 – Vol. 69
Music reviews come in all sizes, but you’re busy and do not have time for flowery language… or sentences, really.
Spinal Tap gave the world the greatest album review of all time:
Welcome to our “Shark Sandwich” — razor-sharp reviews that sum up an album in five sentences or less.
The Breeders – All Nerve
Don’t call it a comeback! Okay, call it that if you like, but just listen to the Breeders’ latest, All Nerve, like you mean it, not like some exercise in “Cannonball” – era nostalgia. Of course you will be reminded of their big hit as well as the Pixies, and it would be a mistake if they didn’t celebrate themselves and their past on this album, but this is a, well, nervy rock and roll album that stands on its own. On “MetaGoth,” it’s almost as if the Pixies never went away… wait… never continued on without Ms. Kim Deal, but it is “Wait in the Car” that seals the deal. There will always be a need for compact, weird riff explosions, and the Breeders have their share in the trunk.
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Wait in the Car”
Judas Priest – Firepower
Judas Priest is metal…like metal metal. Anything you say about them sounds like you are making of fun of them. Seen Heavy Metal Parking Lot or Beavis and Butthead loved the Priest! Here’s the deal, though…fuck off. No one is making fun of them, people just love this band, and if you don’t, well, that is your problem. There is no softening of the edges in 2018, Father Time hasn’t slowed down Judas Priest. This is METAL, do you hear me? If you don’t want to bang your head, you’re dead. This review went over five sentences, and guess what? Judas Priest doesn’t care, and they have earned it. Take some M-E-T-A-L, and call me in the morning.
Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Flame Thrower”
Camp Cope – How to Socialise & Make Friends
Melbourne, Australia’s Camp Cope plays their emotions like an exposed wire, and their rock and roll dry and raw like the garage band you tell everyone you were in “back in the day.” They sound like Camper Van Beethoven with all the layers of weirdness stripped away, for all the good and bad that implies. The good news is that the vocals are great at building emotions and raw. The bad news is that the album has far too many slow, lumbering songs that serve to only display the vocals, and not enough nimble pacemakers. On the whole, the album is pretty good, and it will probably sound great in concert.
Rating: 3 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “UFO Lighter”
Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Tearing at the Seams
Big, burly, stage-shaking, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats are kind of hard to ignore. This is a big band that makes a big, retro soul sound. Nathaniel loves his Sam Cooke, and who doesn’t? Still, he can bring it; while someone like, say, myself cannot. Tearing at the Seams was made in the wrong decade, hell, the wrong century. Thank you, Nathaniel, keep on keepin’ on.
Rating: 4 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “I’ll be Damned”
Albert Hammond Jr. – Francis Trouble
Just who is Albert Hammond Jr., and what is he going on about on Francis Trouble? Is it a serious album, or a seriously fun album? Yes. It crackles with poppy energy, and guitars that throttle your brain. Francis Trouble might be an album named after his still-born twin brother, but surprisingly that isn’t a drag. The music is endlessly engaging and inventive, and makes you listen.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5 whistles
Best Song: “Rocky’s Late Night”
Lead-In Image – Composite
- Album and sleeve – Courtesy of imagefactory / Shutterstock.com
- Main album cover – Courtesy of Blablo101 / Shutterstock.com
- Album collage – Albert Hammond Jr. – Red Bull Records; Judas Priest – Sony Music Distribution; Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats – Stax Records; Camp Cope – Run For Cover Records; and The Breeders – 4AD.