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The album opens up with the excellent opening single "The Mighty Sparrow." The song shows off Leo's singing abilities, manages to be catchy without an actual chorus and contains two false endings, all in a little over two and a half minutes. Next, "Mourning In America" is a blistering rocker in typical Leo fashion with the driving guitars leading the way. "Ativan Eyes" and "Even Heroes Have To Die" come next, both a little slower paced than the two opening tracks, but both are fun, if not terribly memorable. "The Stick" follows, it is as loud and fast as anything Leo has done, a power packed track coming in under two minutes.
The track that is perhaps in the "Living With The Living" mold more than any other on this album, "Bottle in Cork", is also, surprisingly, one of the best. The sound is light and breezy, reminding me of more than a few tracks off of their last album, and it is very enjoyable. The rest of the album continues switching between faster ("Woke Up Near Chelsea", "Where Was My Brain?") and slower ("One Polaroid A Day", "Bartomelo and the Buzzing of Bees"). Over this stretch, "Tuberculoids Arrive in Hop" deserves note for being an extremely slow, stripped-down piece with some interesting vocal parts, not typical Ted Leo at all. "Gimmie the Wire" is a great rocker, one of the standouts of the album. "Last Days" finishes things off, it is another strong tune on an album full of them.Read more ›
At times Ted Leo has suggested in interviews that pop music can't accomplish this kind of consciousness shifting, but, rather, all it can hope to do is preach to the converted. This tension between wanting to craft a political anthem within the confines of pop music shifts to the forefront of his latest album, The Brutalist Bricks, and is perhaps best exemplified by the song "Ativan Eyes." The song begins with a call to action, sprinkled with a little Karl Marx, but, before even the first chorus, abruptly shifts into the idioms of a love song: "The industry's out of touch / The means of production are now in the hands of the worker / But I just want to be touched by your expert hands.Read more ›
Highlights: The Mighty Sparrow, The Last Days, Even Heroes, Bartomelo, and Ativan Eyes.
Comparisons: Elvis Costello and early Police.
Suggestions: Buy it now!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Ted Leo is an impressive musician to say the least. I've had the pleasure to see him in concert on several occasions, and the chance to talk with him on one of those occasions... Read morePublished on February 14, 2013 by OatmealGuy
This band continues to grow with each effort. I hope they are around for a long long time. Head and shoulders above all the androgynous cloying crap we have to listen to today.Published on April 23, 2010 by Alice Carey
I'll admit I'm a big fan of TLRX and was patiently waiting for this release after 2007's Living with the Living. Read morePublished on April 10, 2010 by Robert Trujillo
Don't get me wrong, I've got lots of his other stuff and I liked it fine. But this is a compulsively listenable album that had me all the way, and whatever it is that makes the... Read morePublished on April 8, 2010 by Adam Dukovich
While not lacking in momentum, BB suffers from Leo's increasingly generic writing (Bartomelo And The Buzzing Of Bees is the only track that fully reminds me of his... Read more