I clicked the link and was immediately turned off by the album art, the album name "Stona Rosa" (Surfer Rosa???), and track names like "Street Fighter II". It just seemed like amateur hour. But this is not an art competition, it's about the music, so I clicked play on the first track and was blown away. This is pure indie rock, a wormhole of sound bringing my ears back to the days of Pavement, The Pixies, early Of Montreal, and Portishead. I haven't heard indie rock sound so uninhibited and planted in the early concepts of the genre like this (in The ACBs) since the wonderful Aqueduct record "I Sold Gold"(2005). The sound on the new ACBs album "Stona Rosa" is raw and driven by the marriage of traditional rock instruments that bounce off each other. It feels weird writing this, but it's refreshing to have a lead singers vocals up front and untouched by layers and layers of effects. Flawlessness is often times boring and it's bands like The ACBs that embrace the garage band (not the program) sound without sacrificing any aspect of their final product.
Track after track, The ACBs present some of the best music I've heard all year. The immediate take away is that these guys are clever songwriters. The indie rock sound is coming up on two decades now and it's hard for bands to separate themselves from the greats that came before and even more difficult to shift away from the new artists and bands that are scrambling to fit into new subsections of indie rock. The ACBs seem blissfully unaware of the musical trends of the last five years and the listener prospers with "Stona Rosa". This album was like taking a shower after months of being dirty. All the bullshit buzz outside the actual music that bands/artists use today to get attention washed down the drain and The ACBs remain as a reminder that great music trumps all.