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Shmat's Reviews
For more reviews, please visit Palebear which is where all future Shmat reviews will appear (as of March 2006).

La Rocca
Sing Song Sung (CD EP)

I have a feeling that the boys in La Rocca really, really, REALLY want to get away from any wayward comparisons of their music to U2. It's going to be difficult though... Four lads from Ireland playing guitar based rock. A big dose of those requisite high octane Bono type yelps in the vocals. The same insistent bass lines and engergetic drums.

So when you add it all up in the end, how close does it get? Let's forget about image for awhile. When you come down to songs and structure which is where it probably matters most, there is some catchy material here and it's not at all as minimal as U2 was. I think they may have constructively borrowed from The Strokes or The Vines more than anything else. The title track is only two minutes long and a pretty powerful number.

"Sketches (20 Something Life)" is a great song but that initial punctuated "Yeah!" in the beginning sort of put me off. The bells throughout the song are a sort of nice touch. Lead singer Bjorn Baillie spits out the vocals in rapid fire succession in the verses.

"Home", with it's "whoo-hoos" in the beginning could easily be from the War album. I think it's this track that reminds me the most of U2, and if I were them I would ditch that direction and do more stuff like the next track "Cambodia" which is more simmering and bluesy.

It can't bode too well to encourage the kind of comparisons that the American public will definitely bestow upon them. The rest of the time, though, I think they've got some pretty decent sounds. At least for more mainstream alterna-rena-rock.

- review by SHORTY (2.14.06)        

Dangerbird Records
2658 Griffith Park Boulevard
Box 612
Los Angeles, CA 90039

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