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What Made Milwaukee Famous

What Doesn't Kill Us
bark71: What Made Milwaukee Famous / What Doesn't Kill Us
bark71   CD / DIGITAL Barsuk Records   March 2008
  1. Blood, Sweat & Fears
  2. Sultan
  3. Cheap Wine
  4. The Right Place
  5. For The Birds
  6. Self-Destruct
    • Resistance St.
  7. Prevailing Wind
  8. And The Grief Goes On...
  9. To Each His Own
  10. Middle Of The Night
  11. The Other Side

What Made Milwaukee Famous may unashamedly wear their pop on their sleeves, but that new-wave sheen is stretched taut over a muscular frame of sweaty rock. Milwaukee's energetic, forceful, and impassioned music feels immediately familiar. Michael Kingcaid's laid-back vocals swoon and swagger in and out of the bands rolling melodies, and although sonically polished the music maintains just enough rough edges to keep things interesting.

The Austin guys' 2006 debut, Trying To Never Catch Up, ranged from jittery Franz Ferdinand rock to Rufus Wainwright sensitivity. Now they kick off What Doesn't Kill Us with the thunderous drum work of "Blood, Sweat & Fears," go directly into writing a Crowded House homage with "Sultan" and pop up with the boozy bar anthem, "Cheap Wine." Then (and why not, really?) they nail the sweet pop of bands like Travis and Keane all over the second half of the disc. Thing is, they do it as well as - if not at times better - all of the bands listed above.
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