CD Reviews (Locals Edition)


Fearless Freep You’re Still You in Camouflage (Self-released)

Fearless Freep is a one-man roots-rock project that surprised me with its lyrical depth and crank-up-the-amps attitude. With a weary, snarling Tom Petty voice, Craig McCool sketches characters pushed to desperate margins by their thwarted desires and skewed loyalties. Opening track “Letter” tells of a wife whose husband fights overseas and rarely responds to her handwritten missives. “A Freeway View” details life with an “empty fish tank/a couple guitars, but no food.” But the heartbreaking highlight is the Dylanesque “Route 66,” in which a Michigan exile driving to Nevada watches as “the prairie crumbles to hardpan/as desert overtakes the land.” Metaphors are rich, guitars in-your-face. ★★★☆☆


Groover Let’s Boogie (Hexakosioihexekontahex)

Brace yourself for the ZZ Top-meets-Carcass chaos of the mysterious trio known as Groover. Let’s Boogie is the weirdest, most adventurous EP I’ve endured since Mike Patton’s notorious Mr. Bungle. At times humorous and sinister, Groover revels in defying expectations. When you think this is a beer-themed comedy-metal effort (see “Hop Ride”), the band lurches into the wah-wah pedal-powered orgy of “How the West Was Lost,” and then careens into a mind-breaking black-metal cover of “Sharp Dressed Man,” and then settles into grindcore mode in “Booze on the Grind.” The EP’s only available via cassette tape, but you can score an MP3 at For those with aggressive and eclectic taste only. ★★★☆☆


Eyesore Eyesore (Ecophagy)

Technical musical prowess and fancy production values don’t seem to be the aim of this all-girl, mostly lesbian punk-crust trio. This is haunted-house noise-thrash with total heart, comprising 14 whiplash-inducing tracks, each one clocking in at around the 30-second mark, making for a very brief but intense listen. The lyrics, when intelligible, seem vaguely anarcho-philosophical and take a strong anti-capitalist (see “Corporate Cocksucker”) stance, while the music never strays from its bludgeoning blueprint. The speedy succession at which these songs arrive makes it nearly impossible to tell one from another, but I don’t think it matters. Post-feminists could stand to learn a lot from a band this unapologetically aggressive. ★★★☆☆

Suggested Next Read

Dreams in the Key of Jazz


Dreams in the Key of Jazz

By Sean DeFrank

Michael Frey, owner of Rhumbar at The Mirage, decided that he wanted to add a jazz night to his Strip bar’s weekly schedule, but the question of who would be the resident jazz master lingered. Then one night, Frey walked into the Seven Seas and chanced upon the musician he had been seeking. At the historic venue Frey heard a 78-year-old saxophonist play. Hearing his music, Frey knew that he’d found the man to helm Rhumbar’s jazz night. “They were such great musicians, it was like walking into a time warp into Vegas in 1958,” Frey says.