Shoulders Record Review

'Another Round' goes deep in the cups

Shoulders Record Review

Shoulders

Another Round

"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.

***

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