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  Listen Up! 2/12/02 Listen Up!

Tuesday, Feb. 12

Clinic, "Walking With Thee," Domino Records. I'm guessing this is the British version of the Strokes, a band that harkens back to the styles of New Wave (in this case, the sort of post-punk mélange of Wire and other more rhythmically restrictive outfits of the late 70s and early 80s) without either the substance or the skills. It's kind of pleasant background music, but geez, it ain't rewarding to pay much attention to this.

Grandpa Boy, "Mono," Vagrant Records. Scariano just told me this is actually Paul Westerberg. I thought it was somebody who had programmed all the old Replacements songs into a computer and spat out slightly divergent rewrites. At any rate, that's different from the bland shit he's been churning out under his own name for the last ten or twelve years. It's still not great.

Tift Merritt, "Bramble Rose," Lost Highway Records. This won't be for sale until June, so you've got quite a lot of time to forget everything negative I have to say about it. I thought I kind of liked Tift Merritt. I thought she was the one that I saw play live a couple years ago and enjoyed. But this record has no joy, no swing, no pizzaz, no songs, nothing but a fairly pleasant country-twinged vocal presence. And, really, thumb through any issue of No Depression if you want to find a couple dozen similar artists releasing new records every single month.

--Steve Pick



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