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Reviews CD Reviews Alternative, Indie Rock Affirming the Consequent- The Hell Chart


ARTIST: Affirming the Consequent
ALBUM: The Hell Chart
LABEL: Self-released
REVIEWER: Matthew J.
DATE: 10-27-07

Affirming the Consequent- The Hell Chart

Southern rock, psychedelia, and low-fi alternative don't seem like they'd go together, and indeed, the debut album from Arizona's Affirming the Consequent is kind of a disjointed mess. That doesn't make it bad, though, and even if it takes a long stretch to make the connections between the songs on this CD, many of them certainly shine on their own. "Burn a Politician" starts off with cheerful but righteously pissed off drawls, like Creedence Clearwater Revival's "Fortunate Son" by way of western desert instead of southern swamp, and "Goodbye" is a gorgeous folk-infused ballad, thanks to lovely female backing vocals (and despite a few bursts into feedback-heavy guitar jamming). "Spread Your Hatred Wide" has a brooding atmosphere that merges the country death song with modern hippie hard rock, like a less self-indulgent Incubus, while a cover of ZZ Top's "La Grange" that drenches the whorehouse blues-rocker in shoegaze guitar effects highlights the band's blend of roots rock and brain-melting psychedelia. Lead singer Derrick Espadas has the tendency to occasionally sing so loud he falls right off whatever key he's straining to stay in, as on the unfortunately titled "Melody," but with the way he jumps from laid-back alternative rock on "Coming Home" to Red Hot Chili Peppers-style funk on "Song Z," you've got to give him credit for having a broad stylistic range, if not necessarily a pitch-perfect voice. Affirming the Consequent's sound is undoubtedly too eccentric for some listeners, but if you like jam bands with a hint of an angry edge to them, they might just be your thing.

Check out Affirming the Consequent on MySpace at www.myspace.com/affirmingtheconsequent.


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