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Little Brazil

Tighten the Noose

(Mt. Fuji; US: 6 Feb 2007; UK: Available as import)

Omaha band Little Brazil doesn’t so much tighten the noose as loosen their grip on this album. Whether you’re looking at “A Thrilling Entrance” and its slow-building but Coldplay anthem bombast, or the rollicking “Last Night”, the band seems to hit all cylinders by simply going where the song takes them. Even when they opt for a tamer pop ditty like “Shades”, it sounds like the perfect cross of Weezer and the Cure. Many of these songs hit all the right spots at exactly the right times, as is the case with the urgent, guitar-driven “Stretching Skin”, which also contains a dance flavoring, while a throwaway song such as “On The Ropes” is still a keeper. Perhaps the surprise of the lot is “Good Day Goodbye”, which starts galloping along and steadily picks up steam, bringing to mind the Killers to a lesser extent. The band also shines on the closing “Killing Confidence”.

Rating:

Originally from Cape Breton, MacNeil is currently writing for the Toronto Sun as well as other publications, including All Music Guide, Billboard.com, NME.com, Country Standard Time, Skope Magazine, Chart Magazine, Glide, Ft. Myers Magazine and Celtic Heritage. A graduate of the University of King's College, MacNeil currently resides in Toronto. He has interviewed hundreds of acts ranging from Metallica and AC/DC to Daniel Lanois and Smokey Robinson. MacNeil (modestly referred to as King J to friends), a diehard Philadelphia Flyers fan, has seen the Rolling Stones in a club setting, thereby knowing he will rest in peace at some point down the road. Oh, and he writes for PopMatters.com.


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