High Tension Wires

Saturday

SXSW Records

High Tension Wires

Welcome New Machine (Dirtnap)

Portland, Ore.'s Dirtanp Records certainly has its eyes upon Texas. These CenTex all-stars – featuring Mike Wiebe of Riverboat Gamblers on vocals, Mark Ryan of Marked Men on guitar, and members of Bad Sports (also just signed to Dirtnap) in the rhythm pit – sound exactly like a synthesis of all those bands on third LP Welcome New Machine. Plus some obvious influences: The "Incorporeal" chorus sounds like Devo's "Uncontrollable Urge." Much like lablemate Ryan's new Mind Spiders, there's a focus on whoa-oh-oh vocals and power-pop-punk riffs as exemplified by "Backbone," perhaps the first punk song ever to reference worker drones and queen bees. HTW does under-three-minute blasts well enough, love songs ("Handicapped Hearts") included. A party album for the impending robot takeover. (Sat., 10:15pm, Easy Tiger)

***

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