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La Resistance

Philosophy

(Superphonic Records; US: 8 Feb 2011; UK: 8 Feb 2011)

Time to party like it's 1986

La Resistance’s synth-heavy guitar pop recalls 1980s bands like The Cure, Tears For Fears and Jesus Jones, but the band avoids a nostalgia trip by fielding hook-filled songs with catchy vocals and a strong melodic sense. Hailing from Birmingham, Alabama, the band is the very antithesis of “Southern rock”.  Frontman Greg Summerlin has established his songwriting chops with a series of solo albums, and expanding his sound to include a band has increased the sonic possibilities of his peculiar, pop-shoe-grunge soundscapes. Killer tune “Understanding” layers scratchy guitar, piles of keyboards and nyah-nyah vocals into an irresistible confection. With song titles like “Isolation”, “Pain” and “Loathing”, the prevailing mood on Philosophy isn’t exactly cheery. However, there’s enough rock ‘n’ roll attitude here to avoid an angst-fest, and some moments are positively chipper.

Rating:

DAVID MAINE is a novelist and essayist. His books include The Preservationist (2004), Fallen (2005), The Book of Samson (2006), Monster, 1959 (2008) and An Age of Madness (2012). He has contributed to The Washington Post, Publishers Weekly, Esquire.com and NPR.com, among other outlets. He is a lifelong music obsessive whose interests range from rock to folk to hip-hop to international to blues. He currently lives in western Massachusetts, where he works in human services. Catch up with his blog, The Party Never Stops, at davidmaine.blogspot.com, or become his buddy on Facebook (or Twitter or Google+ or whatever you prefer) to keep up with reviews and other developments.


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