V2 Records Sorry myspacers, Blood Brothers only has some knock-off artist sites and some hip-hoppers of the same name. Band members – Jordan Blilie, vocals; Mark Gajadhar, drums; Morgan Henderson, bass, keyboard; Cody Votolato, guitar; Johnny Whitney, vocals, keyboard. IMAGINE READING THIS WHOLE ARTICLE IN ALL CAPS BECAUSE I JUST GET CAP-CRAZY WHEN I GET EMOTIONALLY JUICED!!!! WELL, BLOOD BROTHERS, AN EMO-ESQUE BAND, DOES THE SAME THING – SCREAMING, BUT OUT LOUD (NOT TYPING). PLEASE STOP SCREAMING, AND, I’LL STOP TYPING IN ALL CAPS. If I wanted to create a jittery feel, bloody eardrums, and overall discomfort, I might call up Blood Brothers to find out their secret. Well, what is it? Jagged sounds created most notably by ear-piercing, pained singing. The music isn’t (always) necessarily loud, or chaotic (it is organized), but instead nervousness-inducing, like caffeine. It’s likable, like coffee, even addictive like java, but has a nasty side effect – jitteriness (AND DEAFNESS!). Hmm, singing along very punk-rock-like, and then – bang – emotive and screaming? Sounds like emo to me! Primal drumming in a driving beat, but less electronic and more organic, it’s like techno unplugged. And, it truly is emo, at least by association. Famed Fugazi member and Rites of Spring Member, Guy Picciotto, was enlisted for their CD Young Machete, which was produced by John Goodmanson. Ah, oddly enough another music reviewer commented to me about screaming music just last week (before I knew I was reviewing Blood Brothers): “It’s really hard to review something you hate, and can’t hear the words to. People tell me to read the lyrics, and I always respond: ‘doesn’t that defeat the purpose of setting it to music?” I appreciate what they’re up to, but seriously, lose the screaming! Please send me some Excedrin. Migraine! Now! I find myself having to replay songs 5 times before remembering to listen to the words, which have a political, generational message. The CD I reviewed did not come with lyrics, so I was on my own. [I thought Panama was Cannonball for say 20 years after the song’s release! So, your messages are all up to MY distorted hearing, complicated by YOUR screamo!] Hey, maybe the war in Iraq is still ablaze just because politicos can’t hear the words to your songs. Speaking of politics, the band takes politics personally and sees their medium as a way to affect change in the world. They are so passionate and become so excited that their message can get lost amidst the noise, I guess. It makes me want to turn the music off, but it’s immobilizing, much like being electrocuted. Blood Brothers classify themselves as individual, creative, and probably more experimental than anything else, though others describe them as Screamo/Emo/Techno, not surprisingly. The sound is like punk singing, some 60s, and driving rhythms found before electronica – more pure and acoustic in sound. The jagged effect is endearing, in its own way. Ok, if you don’t want to hear my rendition of Panama – Canonball, then here’s the lyrics to Blood Brothers’ CD, EP (interestingly not on their own site): http://www.plyrics.com/b/bloodbrothers.html It’s definitely more meaningful when you read their lyrics, because it makes more sense. But, I wrote without that luxury, to see what would happen. And, heck, maybe you’ll laugh along with me. Overall, their songs are jarring in their transitions, and are like patchwork quilts – sewing together contrasting sounds that sometimes create too much inner discord and disonance for my taste. 1. Love Rhymes With Hideous Car Wreck: I actually like the concept and title of this song. But, I was blindsided when they went emo on me. 2. Ladies And Gents: Cure-ish song opener, with strained singing; ie, music is mellow but screamed over. And then, everything gets LOUD! I can discern “ladies and gents” and “don’t know nothing.” Switches back to guitars, singing between higher male voice (now not screaming) and male voice answering (not screaming). GOOOOO SCREAMOOOO AGAIN!!!!! “Cat’s claws” is heard near the end, though little idea why they’re screaming this. 3. Metronomes: Imagine if a metronome was created by primal drumming (thud … thud … thud, etc.). Well, it drives this song, overlaid with screaming singing, occasional strummings and pluckings on a guitar or something (it’s piercing my eardrums, so it’s hard to tell. It’s fairly catchy, though.) At one point Blood Brothers reduces itself back down to the thud, and just a plucking of piano strings. I was so busy rebounding, I forgot to listen to the words – and I played this song at least 5 times. 4. Crimes (Quiet): Loud guitar, tambourine, guy singing, switches to guitar with sweeter sound, drum set… They’re screaming, asking “IS ANYONE LISTENING?” Something about garbage and a pile of junk burning. Ironically, sometimes in life, the louder we cry out, the less people listen. Hmm. 5. Peacock Skeleton With Crooked Feathers [Remix]: I learned some guitar in junior high school music, where I learned how to embellish a note by pushing the string up or down. They do a lot of this at the opening of this song. Ooh, is that an organ, or just a keyboard making an organ sound? “AAAA_OH-whoo do you love? AAAAH-OH-hoo do you trust? Love thinking, well this peacock can sing!” (I don’t know. Is that what they’re saying. Funny how they’re screaming, and yet I still can’t seem to hear them. I like the organ with the drums and the guitar. It’s a unique sound, even if it’s resurrected from another time and place.) 6. Anthrax [Remix]: The Doors trashing their instruments on stage, is how this starts out. Insert primal, driving drumming, and switch to punk singing: “Love will get you like a case of Anthrax. And that’s something I don’t want to catch…” It’s likable and honest. Oh, I admit it, it made me snicker too. 7. Love Rhymes With Hideous Car Wreck [Live]: It’s the same thing as before, but live. 8? (Not mentioned on the cover of my CD): Sounds a lot like Midnight Oil of 1980s mainstream fame. Goes a little XTC awhile there. Ok, I can’t deal with the screaming anymore. 9: (Does this really exist if it’s on the CD but not on the cover? Is this a secret bonus track?) More metal-sounding screaming here, with a keyboard. Oh, stop! No, really. Shut up now! My CD player feels violated, I’ll have you know.