The whole this-band-sounds-a-lot-like-Pavement thing seems to be way too prevalent in music writing today (especially in regard to any band that sounds remotely influenced by 90s music), but that familiar sense of wry, unenthusiastic irony droops its lazy head all over Doubting Thomas Cruise Control’s new cassette. The Brooklyn quartet released Appleton ON earlier this week, and it’s a concise collection of five incredibly solid songs with musical and lyrical themes that span from the light to the dark.
One lyric on the release’s opening track, “Flyover State”, sets the tone of the cassette incredibly well: “Nothing out there’s really different/Meat is murder, shopping’s murder, driving’s murder/But most of all/Don’t forget that murder is murder.” It’s a goofy line, but it presents a pretty vexing question: why are we worrying about Morrissey’s veganism, punk anti-capitalism or hippie environmentalism when some whack-o with a hammer can just knock the brains right out of your head? Morbid tangent aside, singer/guitarist Bobby Cardos vocalizes these lyrics with a very Malkmusian sense of slouch, a theme that carries throughout the guitar-based, 90s-tinged cassette. Just don’t go calling Doubting Thomas Cruise Control a Pavement rip-off band.
Stream Appleton ON and head over to Doubting Thomas Cruise Control’s Bandcamp to buy the cassette.