Reviewed by Darcie Stevens, Fri., Jan. 18, 2008
AM SyndicateLiberation (Novastar)
Plunging further than homage to Omar (Rhythm of Black Lines) Chavez's favorite band, Blonde Redhead, Liberation regurgitates waves of echo with no hint of inspiration despite Erik Wofford's able production. The second album from the local now-trio also finds Arcade Fire intonations (muddied "The Neighbor and His Wife"), touches of late-1980s Manchester, and even glimpses of Trail of Dead in opener "Hang Your Fears at the Door and Join Your Future." With the breach of "All the People Under the Sun," the first whisper of an actual AM Syndicate identity crowns, perhaps five years too late, as the Stone Roses beat merges with Laura Krause's guest vocals. Like so many of their local contemporaries, AM Syndicate tries too damn hard to be cool when they should concentrate on making modern music now.