REVIEW: Ladyhawk - Shots
We Listen For You Monday, April 28, 2008
Oh Jagjaguar records, how you pick 'em. Vancouver-based Ladyhawk's second album for the label, Shots, is a tight raucous affair with over-the-top RAWK moments juxtaposed with tight instrumentation, noisy solos, and a penchant for droning vocals moved along by big cymbal crashes.
There's the soft self-loathing of "(I'll Be Your) Ashtray" which pinnacles in a sloppy chorus of self-destruction and desire. Or the amazingly taut "S.T.H.D" (who knows what it stands for?) which feels like something out of a kung-fu movie about white kids - guitars stringently rushing into one another, riffs turning on a dime that seem to say "I wanna get drunk and fuck up someone's wedding. And when I say someone, I mean my own."
Ladyhawk's most prominent musical piece is Duffy Driediger whose melancholy voice sounds whiskey soaked and desperate which pairs perfectly with lyrics like "I don't know / there's no such thing as endless love / only a joke told in very poor taste / which somehow keeps crackin' me up" (from "Ghost Blues"). There's just enough loose ends and jangles to give you the feeling of early Neil Young, haunted and desperate, wandering the cold Canadian winter for a group of youngers to bestow his ghost upon. Shots is a haunted riveting album, that at first seems like a new stab at alternative rock, but opens up into something far deeper, far more hurt, and far more joyous. Well, maybe not joyous, but more naked.