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Casket Lottery | Moving Mountains | review | indie | alternative | rock | Lollipop

The Casket Lottery

Moving Mountains (Second Nature)
by Tim Den

It was bound to happen: pop-punk's melodic know-how blending with art rock ala Big Black/every other Chicago band to produce a new genre all its own. Why didn't I think of it first? It's like combining peanut butter with jelly: both are good in their own right, but when combined, they cancel out the flaws in each other. Taking the lead created by Jawbox and Burning Airlines, The Casket Lottery (which, by the way, is two-thirds former Coalesce members) and Shiner are tight, pounding bands with more polyrhythms and downbeats than Shellac has abandoned. Add to that a discordant sense of melody that somehow works (especially in Shiner's case), a liver-than-a-live record drum sound (if only garage bands had this kind of crushing production), and positive art school experimentations (weird sounds, guitar tunings, instrument interplay), and you've got original and pleasing heavy rock.

It's funny how a lot of this stuff sounds like Shades Apart could've written it, but then again, Shades Apart's use of unpredictable melodies has always been way ahead of its time. Note to bands: this is a new territory that everyone should be heading into. Intelligent, challenging, but down-to-earth in its ability to be enjoyed even by the mainstream (because you can't fight flat-out good rock). The Casket Lottery and Shiner are two perfect examples (and let's not forget the other emerging giant, Someday I, also on Owned & Operated) of how this type of music will be revered for the way it unravels itself differently every time it's played, as well as its heavy (off-time) catchiness.
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