Ann Beretta To All Our Fallen Heroes (Lookout!)

SXSW Records

Record Reviews

Ann Beretta

To All Our Fallen Heroes (Lookout!)

Richmond, Virginia's Ann Beretta treads the punk rock road, songs like "Fire in the Hole" and "Eye for an Eye" calling to mind old-school punk bands like Minor Threat and All. Unison vocals, lots of guitar, lots of energy, lots of melody, short on hooks and originality. The band does deliver, though, particularly when they stray away from the loud-n-fast ethos. "Like a Riot" comes across like revved-up roots rock, Chuck Berry refitted with an SG, Marshall stack, and a belly full of espressos. "Mad at the World" is more along the lines of straight-ahead mid-tempo rock, with dynamics and a good sense of melody. A horn section provides a tasteful honk or two on "Burning Bridges," for a bit of a ska feel, while the organ and chorus hook of "Love's Easy Tears" brings the Clash to mind. A faithful cover of Cheap Trick's "Surrender" closes the disc, begging the question of why the tracks weren't sequenced with the stronger songs up front. All's Bill Stevenson provided the CD's monstrous production, guitars, drums, and vocals, all leaping out of the speakers. Though the songwriting could use some of that, there's plenty of power here to ensure that Ann Beretta must be a scorching live band. (Thursday, Emo's Jr., 10pm)


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