Shoulders Record Review
'Another Round' goes deep in the cups
"The wisdom of the ages ain't worth its weight in shit," bellows Shoulders' Michael Slattery in the cataclysmic stein-swinger, "From Here to Armageddon." It's a trenchant mission statement for a band unfurling its first album in 20 years. Then again, Shoulders always channeled the wizened, Old World vibe of a debauched town crier. From the Eastern European-flavored "Drunk Spins the World" to slurred broadside "Drunk as Hell," Another Round repeatedly goes deep in the cups. There's even a slinky, back-alley jazz nod to caffeine ("Too Late for Latte"). After insinuating late-night nastiness on "Down at the Pier," Slattery finally collapses into cackles and screams in the fade. Contrast that with the lilting "Pretty Boy," which emotes deep-seated longing at its rawest human essence. The raucous, trumpet plunger-infused "Forbidden Fruit" is an old live favorite that hasn't lost an iota of wallop. Maturity only adds extra pathos to this shambling sideshow soundtrack.