The Thinnest Line (self-released)
This five-track EP is rife with sexy R&B backed by elements of funky hip-hop and solid live instrumentation. It has an overall lounge vibe for the casual cool cat who dresses well and knows how to order a drink. The collective comprises Plex, Wreckonize, BernBiz, Primo, LT Hopkins, and Gio, and though thuggy as the group might sound, this disc has none of that. This CD can slide neatly between some Earth, Wind & Fire and a nice showcase of good early-'90s hip-hop. These guys are pretty good live, so check 'em out.
I found this EP on the sidewalk by White Room and picked it up with the same gusto I scoop up loose change and crumpled bills. Although a Finnish melodic death-metal band bears the same name, this act is all local. Here's a nice quarter-hour of creepy, semi-computerized beats and what might or might not be household instrumentation, a cappella weirdness, awkward mumbling, detached vocals, and some industrial-style injections. Young Matthew Noumena bills himself alone as playing everything. The result is disturbing ditties for depressed readers of poetry à la E. M. Cioran and e.e. cummings.
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Vultures Are Wolves
Vultures Are Wolves (self-released)
This eight-track disc of pure metal mayhem is a welcome treat. Not the usual arpeggio-laden, "I studied guitar for 15 years and I wanna get laid" crap, this is the real deal. Solid musicianship from this trio — Juan Blanco on vocals, Jorge Ubieta on guitar and bass, and Alejandro Tuesta on drums — sets the group apart. There are chunky moments, gritty breakdowns, and vocals that go from satanic growls to animalistic screams that can also temper when the song dictates. The band's sense of humor comes out on tracks such as "The River Took Dee Snider" and "Cancer Tale of the Hyena." That's just precious, baby. Think a little Converge, a little Cripple Bastards, and Japan's Gauze. Look forward to more!