Take Pride in Your Long Odds (Navigational Transmissions / Thirty Tigers)
Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Aug. 8, 2014
Centro-maticTake Pride in Your Long Odds (Navigational Transmissions/Thirty Tigers)
After 17 years, perennial indie underdog Centro-matic knows something about embracing the long odds. The local quartet's 11th studio LP plays to those defiant in the struggle, buffering the balance of resolve and regret. Take Pride also ventures more diverse and eclectic, from the title track's methodical guitar crunch and lo-fi ambience to the almost Eighties rock rhythm of lead single "Salty Disciple." Will Johnson's diesel-burning vocals still inflect gritty determination, especially on the slower "Every Mission" and dreamy, reverbed "Anything Torn Out." "Academy of Lunkers" acts as centerpiece behind hard-bitten but melodic lines. Guitars broil on the driving "Cynthia Glass" and caustic scrapes of "On the Ride Back," and simmer on the understated "Hey There, Straps" and percussive jabs of "Relative Unto Aces." Closer "Through the Fog, Then Down" finally stuns inwardly impressionistic, with a subtle aching croon washing into encroaching darkness.