Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Volcano! - Paperwork

(09.2008, Leaf Spain)
File Under = Baroque Post Punk

In some ways, writing about music is inherently limiting, at least in the current critical atmosphere. I just feel like I personally don’t have the tools with which to properly indentify and describe some music without inadvertently boxing it into some premade category that really does nothing to help you understand what it is that makes that particular band or artist worth investing some time in. Volcano! (yes, another exclamation point acting like a letter of the alphabet in an otherwise generic band name) is certainly one of those bands that set themselves up to be misunderstood. Not necessarily by those who listen to them. There is really no way to confuse the fact that you are listening to really awesome, original music when you hear it. But, from a critical or reviewerly standpoint, Volcano! Simply employ too many reference points and new ideas to come out of a 500 word puff piece with anything more than confusion or misunderstanding. With that said (or written), my intent is to convince you, the reader, on whatever false premises that I can, to listen to this record; because, while it may end up sounding nothing like what I have described, at least it will still be good. You can hear a little of Ted Leo in there, some of The Velvet Teen, a little indie jazz ala Extra Life or Skeletons, some Colormusic, maybe even some Mars Volta (!?), but to leave it at that would be to underwrite Paperwork by about a bajillion times. Volcano! Is of course their own band and with that many reference points that is usually the case. Paperwork is simply a workout; it’s super energetic, kind of theatrical, super baroque post punk/indie rock that is playful and muscular. Have I over-described it yet? Whether or not that is the case, I am going to leave it at that. There is no use right now. I’m too fried trying to finish studying for all my finals this week. Suffice it to say: Paperwork contains all the caffeine I’ll need to help me make it through the week.

-Mr. Thistle

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