If you ever wished that Morrissey would kick the energy up a notch during his
days with The Smiths, The Apology Wars is the album for you.
With a punk background (Blueline Medic features two former members of Caustic
Soda) and an admitted affection for Jawbreaker, the band has an understated punk sensibility, but it's mixed rather perfectly with Jets To Brazil-styled emo. The result is a bastardized
combination of joyous rocking out in your parents' basement, and its
antithesis -- grabbing a guitar, retreating to your bedroom and brooding over
who's done you wrong. Whatever it is and whoever the influences are, it
There's a strange intensity running through The Apology
Wars. It's as if every song the band plays is performed out of a dire
necessity. This is not to say that anything sounds even remotely forced; in
fact, the effect is just the opposite. For all the urgency Blueline Medic emits, each
song builds into the next in a natural-sounding progression. The
intensity seems to be a simple by-product of their simple desire to play
music. This is the sound of a band that is focused, not on fame or wealth or
radio play, but just on writing good songs. That's a necessity I can respect.
From the melodically melancholy "At Least We Had The War" to the
rollercoaster-like "Write Us" and then on to "Welcome Paradox" (a prime
example of what The Sundays would sound like if they had a male voice)
there's enough diversity to show a few different sides of Blueline Medic and
thankfully, each of those sides is equally pleasing.
The Apology Wars is one of those discs that you really must add to your "back-to-school"
shopping list. Consider it required listening for your music appreciation
class. I realize it's not Bach, but if he was alive today he'd probably have
it on rotation in his car too.