Mike Krol

Power Chords

Merge

Jan 23, 2019 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


Mike Krol makes tight, grimy garage rock that sounds as panicked as it does informed. Krol's latest full-length album, Power Chords, is appropriately titled11 ravenous pop songs that sound like they were thrown through a wood chipper and then stepped on with metal cleats. In the process, Power Chords manages to overcome a tricky, oftentimes colorless trope of 21st century garage-rock revisionists: sounding monotonous. Krol's songs are invigorated and refreshed, never arriving at a lull, constantly taking unexpected U-turns.

But Krol's music in no way shares the personality of its contemporariesKrols lyrics are much more self-aware, though much less self-deprecatingand he revels in frustrations of love and distance. His slanted approach of filthy, dumpster-rock is flooded with emotionally conscious prose, such as "With a couple power chords, I'm gonna let you know," and "I still can't forget the day we first met/It haunts me to this day, with bitter sweet regret," on the title track opener, "Power Chords."

The uneasy and infinitely melodic arrangements on "An Ambulance" and "Left for Dead" bring to mind Krol's mini-hit "Fifteen Minutes," a song Krol has had unfairly foisted upon him as his "moment." Luckily for Krol, Power Chords moves a few steps forward from the stand-alone moments on his past three studio albums, I Hate Jazz, Trust Fund, and Turkey, hitting a stride which opens entirely new avenues for Krol. Tied down by his buzz saw vocals and shattered guitars, Power Chords finds an endless groove in 35 minutes or less. (www.mikekrol.bandcamp.com)

Author rating: 7/10

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Average reader rating: 7/10



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