A.M. Slingers (New LP)
$ 17.99

Label: Leed Wegal

"On their debut LP, Chicago quartet A.M. Slingers stick to the classics. Two electric guitars twine, the rhythms kickstart, amps hit on overdrive, and there’s the resigned hope that maybe, just maybe, the formative elements of power, pop, and a high leg kick can make waking up tomorrow sound like a decent prospect. Until that sun rises there’s ringing in the ears and the buzz of beer and fluorescence, hot sauce splashed on the counter top, and economy of both sound and lyric. Slashing treble bites hard on bone, and the choruses of the power pop-infused “Second Guessing” and more raw and scowling “Idiot” boil down to a collective shout, because you’re likely in the singer’s corner when he claps back at busted relationships and empty promises. (Rich Forsythe and Andy Rader handle lead vocals and guitars; bassist Brad Menna and drummer Glenn Rischke round out A.M. Slingers.) Elsewhere on this promising, tightly-packed debut, recorded with Greg Norman at Electrical Audio, the bracing “Rock ‘n’ Roll Heart” offers the hereditary scorched earth policy of early Replacements as genetic material for a pissed-off plea through a mouth of clenched teeth. Is having a heartbeat enough to get by? And “Pink Dress” rounds out the set with the language of love and ringing guitars bashing out into the ether. A.M. Slingers can’t know what’s next. But their rock road map makes finding it sound a lot better."

--Johnny Loftus