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splendid > reviews > 9/1/2004
Alec K. Redfearn & the Eyesores
Alec K. Redfearn & the Eyesores
Every Man for Himself & God Against All
Corleone


Format Reviewed: CD

Soundclip: "Heartpunch"

Buy me now
Emerging from the same fertile arts scene (Providence, Rhode Island) that brought us Les Savy Fav and Lightning Bolt, wandering minstrels Alec K. Redfearn & the Eyesores stick out like a sore thumb in today's all-too-ironic world of anglo-bred indie rock. Descriptors like "gypsy-rock" and "klezmer-rock" crop up when discussing Every Man for Himself & God Against All; the album sounds as though it was crafted sometime in 1944, with the world's best prohibition-era brass band providing a solid backbone for Redfearn's sordid tales. There's a strong Balkan undercurrent running through festive stompers like "Black Tar and White Slavery", while "Heartpunch"'s wild accordionized oscillations sound like someone electrocuting the life out of the world's funkiest polka band. The delirious carnival coda that sends "Nail/Total Eclipse of the Head/K-Hole" into the sunset is beautiful and beguiling -- like tuning into a shortwave station broadcasting Tom Waits's heliocentric brain waves. The brave soldiers of the Eyesores are boldly willing to buck musical trends, and never afraid to skin up the rulebook and do things their own way. As such, they deserve your respect, and perhaps even your adoration.


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