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TheDeathSet

MFDS

7-inch

(Counter; US: Unavailable; UK: 11 Feb 2008)

One of the lamest things a band can ever do is sing their own name, unless they’re being so ironic and over-the-top that it’s impossible to take them seriously or they’re Built To Spill and, thus, exempt from such guidelines. Australia via Baltimore collective TheDeathSet are doing their own thing, dragging punk and hardcore through a warehouse rave killing floor. That’s fine in and of itself. However, they spend half of their time on their first single for Ninja Tune’s new rock sublabel chanting “mother fucking Death Set” over simple rock drumming, stagnant but fuzzy guitar riffage that takes dance-punk to a junkyard kegger, and a craptacular casio keyboard. It’s as annoying as it is pointless. And yet, Dan Deacon and Spank Rock—two acts known for their amazing diversity and channeling of pop structures through abstract means—count among their biggest fans. I don’t get the appeal. TheDeathSet can barely play, so anything truly transcendent is beyond their reach, and their lyrics are mostly indecipherable. This is too amateur for punk, and that’s saying something. I can’t imagine what they’re going to do for their upcoming debut full-length Worldwide, but I hope lots of practice is involved.

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Author of blurbs, curator of playlists, and booker of shows, Alan Ranta has been plugging away at that music writing and programming thing since 2004. His brutally honest critical opinion has appeared in such publications as Exclaim!, CBC Music, PopMatters and Tiny Mix Tapes, and has been enlisted to help judge the Polaris Music Prize, Pazz & Jop, and Juno Awards. Based in East Van, he graduated with a BFA in music from Simon Fraser University in 2012. He's also a social media plague, cat whisperer, socio-political haranguer, Canucks fan, and one of the last remaining cowboys.


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