Prisonshake 2xCD reviewed by Chris White

Music Reviews
Prisonshake 2xCD reviewed by Chris White
Feb 11, 2009, 19:05

Prisonshake - Dirty Moons


Dirty Moons is perhaps best viewed not so much as a record but more as a memorial, a memorial that doesn't appear on any tourist maps and doesn't list public viewing hours. It's a miracle if you even stumble across it.  I suppose there's something admirable about erecting a monument in your own name. No doubt hundreds of bands and at least a few more fans owe these guys a debt of gratitude for their mighty contributions to the world of underground rock.  But why would any of them step off your backs long enough to even hang a flyer much less build a tribute.  What to do? True to your DIY roots, pile high a 22 song, double disc-shaped shrine to yourself. Unfortunately somewhere during the decade and a half it took to make this public work, the band ran out of building material, decided to finish it off with debris and castoff waste and now the construction is more Grant's Tomb than Lincoln Memorial. Ironically, the lyrics mostly read the same way, like a world-weary eulogy to rock and roll or possibly just the lifestyle.  It's not so much a vanity project though, more of one that just has nothing to do with gaining positive reviews, new fans or even (especially) sales. Songs like, “The Cut-Out Bin,” “I Will Comment” and “Favorite Hospital” front load the disc and give it the potential to be a solid rock experience. The sharp edges and snappy one-liners are vintage Prisonshake but that whole “who gives a shit what you think…we made this for ourselves” attitude permeates the record and does more to alienate the listener than draw them into the party.  Half thoughts, unfinished songs and second-bests dominate the final two-thirds, creating a tapestry that at times flashes brilliance (“Memo from Chambers (Scissors Suite part 5)”) and at other times reveals threadbare bullshit. Depending on your point of view, this could be a fascinating look behind the process of one of your favorite bands or a maddening stop and start prick tease. [Scat]

-Chris White


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