The Afterbirth (Alias)
by Craig Regala
Steel-shod jangle, a roughly-handled gritty “folkish” thing, Caustic Resin‘s groove is a slow continual swap between a tumble and a dusty trudge. The Afterbirth does for me what the (electric) Neil Young LPs I like do for me. They lay a sheet of chiming, stinging, spacey gauze over the age-old folk, blues, country rootage of where this “rock” gunk has come from and sound contemporary doing it. The feel of it reminds me of pre-Wall Pink Floyd and their guitar player David Gilmour’s first album. Yeah, I said it before, but that’s just where I go for a reference point. There’s probably much in the indie post-indie world that swirls around and copes with these feelings in the same general sonic way. Hell, bands as divergent as the Red House Painters, Dinosaur Jr., Codeine, Chris Whitley, Scrawl, the Wolverton Brothers and Fuzzhead all strike the same nerve for me. (The last three are Ohio bands, if you’re not familiar.)
All this wouldn’t mean much if they didn’t have a tunesmith in the band, and they do. Maybe it’s synergy between ‘m, maybe one guy writes it all – don’t know, don’t care. It works well and I’d be much happier if I could hear it on the radio, have it in the air, taking its place, doing the work for people that good music does. Yeah, buy the CD, Internet “radio,” MP3, whatever… that’s fine, but this belongs drifting out there so someone driving home from their stupid second job can hear it and enjoy it out of the blue. My only complaint is it ends too soon. I’d really like ‘m to’ve picked a couple tunes to cover; just something they’ve liked, or a melody to run with. Maybe take the Dream Syndicates’ “When You Smile” and just ride into the sun with it… for a half hour or so.
(10153 1/2 Riverside Dr. #115 Toluca Lake, CA 91602)