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ALBUM REVIEW: "Pop Crimes"

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Rowland S. Howard

"Pop Crimes"

Fat Possum Records

Fatpossum.com

Rowland S. Howard isn't forgotten, it's just that he never really made any pitches from the periphery where he resided after the morph of his band, Melbourne's The Boys Next Door into The Birthday Party. On "Pop Crimes," Howard's uber-cool frosts the scene with his narcotic, narcoleptic vocal deadpan and raw guitar minimalism. It's exquisite in its sexified mid-tempo grind; moody as hell with a noir patina and flourish. It's amazing how music this dark — intensified by its creator's absence — can draw you to its black heart and make you aware that you've been smiling since you dropped the needle in the first groove. Can you tell I f***ing love this record?

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