steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
blankred.jpg (4669 bytes)
info opinion

Cobra Verde

"Easy Listening" CD

MuscleTone Records

Genres: rock, indie rock

8949 Sunset Blvd
Suite #203
West Hollywood CA 90069

Jul 26 - Aug 1 2004

"Name fifteen rock albums."

This seemingly simple challenge poses an interesting conundrum.  It seems to me that the more musically knowledgeable someone is, the tougher it would be to compose a satisfying list.  While casual listeners would be happy to name off fifteen "rock" records (Phil Collins and all), the true aficionado would probably spend so much time dissecting each album's validity instead.  There are too many subgenres and subtle variations... does pop count as rock?  Is heavy metal true rock?

In comes Cobra Verde, content to fill up one of those fifteen spots with Easy Listening.  Though despite its billing as pure, unadulterated rock, this album is thoroughly original - its influences span the entire map, but the overall blend is a completely fresh sound.  "Whores" is rabid, lo-fi, Jon Spencer-esque rawk - its raw, gritty attitude has a sort of modernized Stooges sound.  "Throw It Away" almost sounds like it belongs on a mid-90s alternative radio playlist.  Meanwhile, "The Speed of Dreams" and "Don't Worry (The Law's Gonna Break You)" go straight for the hooks - basking the listener in a veritable marinade of melody and energy.  In a clever twist, the latter borrows its solo from the theme to "Midnight Cowboy."

Easy Listening is the definitive rock album ... as "definitive" as a rock album can be.


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 11 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2003]