Liars (Artist of the Month) Review

by Patrick Muldowney

Liars have pulled off a significant coup with their latest release. Music has become such a relentless bore with numerous acts claiming titles like Independent, Experimental, and the dreaded Alternative, when the only difference from mainstream is they're either less popular or suck more. The cultural (and political) texture is perfect for anything that doesn't stay the course, yet somehow reaches unwilling seekers, or those who haven't realized their meal is rancid. Or as Angus Andrew states in "Sailing to Byzantium", "It's time we woke those dumb f**** up." Liars will be the strangest approach to crawl from marginal collections into mass periphery since the early 90s when Nothing's Shocking (took a few years) and Mellow Gold overcame similar obstacles of ignorance.

How will Liars overcome not being a logical fit?

1.It has guts. Listeners who want to rawk don't buy into all that artsy crap, but if testosterone's involved, they'll bite. "Plaster Casts of Everything" has the draw of Ministry at its peak, and "real" men didn't buy into industrial until "Jesus Built My Hotrod" and "Just One Fix". Like the video, it reflects insanity, violence, and speed; a successful mix of elements.

2.It has dance/pop appeal. Just when the young lady is getting scared and excited by "Plaster Casts…", Liars flips to "Houseclouds", a club track which has enough groove to draw in a Justin Timberlake fan, if necessary. Just like Beck was somehow okay for Janet Jackson fans. Also, "Clear Island" combines both guts and dance. If there is ever a song to which I could jump around in circles with my hands in the air without feeling a single sense of inhibition, this will be the one.

3.The lyrics are quick. The music is repetitive, but most importantly, during the songs that will become key to Liars' success, the lyrics are simple and repetitive. Who can't understand lines like, "I won't be going" and "I wanna run away", especially when they're drilled into your head?

4.They're not logical. The unoriginal love to feel original without hurting their brains and they're much better adapting to strange sounds than strange words. You don't have to look up strange sounds in the dictionary. That's why I'll bet Liars will be more accepted than Boxer (The National) and Return to Cookie Mountain (TV on the Radio), even though all three are equally grand.

Follow-up: How will Liars avoid the sellout label?

1.Invariably in some idiot's mind they won't, although one listen is proof enough. These songs may be a little more crafted and less impulsive than previous recordings, but there is no ulterior effort being made beyond the creation of a great album. No band in their right mind attempting to attract numbers would choose the abstract sound, the repetitive plodding, and the dramatic aural shifts Liars pulls off here.

2.Like Mellow Gold, previous fans will find themselves loving the other songs. My personal favorite is "Pure Unevil".

3.The label is excited. The band is excited. Selfishness is not exciting. It's draining.

The new album comes with one guarantee: Liars will be a significant blip for the near-sighted. A notable explosion wouldn't be out of the question.

Tracks added to iPod: Plaster Casts of Everything, Houseclouds, Sailing to Byzantium, What Would They Know, Freak Out, Pure Unevil, Clear Island, Protection

CD Info and Links

Liars (Artist of the Month)

Preview and Purchase This CD Online

Visit the official homepage

More articles for this artist .