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A vibrant, energetic force of alternative rock revivalism, Chicago’s NEUROTIX have emerged with Basement Recordings an album that is as much of a statement of intent as it is a musical call-to-arms celebrating their early ’90s influences. They are one of the numerous bands today whose main priority is championing the resurgence of grunge, but whereas many today try to update it or stylize it with a stripped, DIY aesthetic, NEUROTIX are essentially traditionalists who are keen to recreate the sound of early Nirvana as accurately as possible. Nevertheless, the band easily transcends mere imitation, and becomes something which could have stood successfully on its own during the genre’s heyday.
The lead single, “Loser,” which also happens to be the album closer, truly is the best example of the entire collection of songs. It’s remarkably similar to early lo-fi Nirvana, but the grime is turned up to eleven. “Can’t Stand You” is another song which encapsulates the band’s identity with its simplistic and repetitive yet almost incomprehensible lyrics. What is audible, however, is a great deal of unbridled emotion and attitude in a way that is subversively bubblegum and cartoonish. The sentiments like “Drive Me Crazy” and “Hate Me” are nevertheless authentic, and for an album recorded at a practice space, there is an accomplished aspect to Basement Recordings regardless of its very unpolished state.
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