steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Fire Hydrant

"Better Late Than Never" CD


Genres: rock/pop

November 2006

First off, why would you call your band Fire Hydrant? Not to pick any fights or anything, but I just don't see anything notable about the object - sure, fire safety is important, but what does that have to do with a rock band? Oh well, I'm sure there's meaning there somewhere... but what about the album title? Aren't old adages a little out of style? Avoiding cliché is like the first thing you learn in any artistic endeavour. But opinions and assholes aside, I'm here to review music, not names - but it's this same sort of bland nature that pervades the songs on this record. If the band's name and album title weren't enough to drive the point home, then the music takes care of the rest. This album just begs to blend into the background. Fire Hydrant seems scared to lash out and make a name for themselves, which transfers to the music - it is unspectacular at best, and tentative without doubt. Simple pop/rock tunes are the name of the game here, and sadly the great majority are pretty mediocre. If it weren't for uplifting dreamer "Cassie" I'd consider this record completely bereft of inspired moments. Toss-offs like "Robots for Dinner" (look ma, they're so goofy!) and low-effort "Blue" do the band no favours, while a supporting cast of somewhat amateur, bland rock numbers amount to very little. Critics are always talking about great albums within the context of the millions of other average background-faders. I think you get where this one fits in.

MP3s (from .com): robots for dinner, cassie, fractured mind, riding bears


Fun Fact: "Robots for Dinner" is apparently a crowd favourite.

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 10 tracks, distributed by the band thru paypal, released Jan 2006]