Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Off With Their Heads - In Desolation

Minneapolis has always been a north star for me when it comes to the rock music. The Holy Trinity of Mats, Soul Asylum and Husker Du still loom large in my sphere of musical influences. The mighty Dillinger 4 filled in the space before Sean Na Na, Banner Pilot, The Hold Steady and Off With Their Heads came around to share the weight of being America's finest punk scene.

The first Off With Their Heads EP, Hospitals, came around at a time where I was feeling kinda Ryan Young-ish my own self. At that time, having another crazy guy to scream along with was a good thing to have around the house and the troubled mind of the OWTH leader was just the ticket. Young's troubled existence made for an inconsistent musically, but always interesting, live show. As OWTH has been on tour for the last two years at least, they made up for it with sheer number of opportunities to see them. They dropped a full-length and singles comp on No Idea and have now jumped on the Epitaph roster for In Desolation.

I had been pretty bored with the last four or five Off With Their Heads shows that came through town, but listening to this little firecracker on my last couple of rides has got me buying a ticket for the show next week with Dear Landlord. Buying In Desolation gets you twelve shades of the artist going through his everyday nervous breakdowns and still living, for better or worse. Every one of these songs is so damn good that I can't think for the life of me they were playing any them at any of the live shows I'd seen before this dropped. Granted, I Just Want You To Know is reprised from The Measure split, but from the opening Drive to the closing Clear The Air you get a bumper crop of quality post-Weasel punk rock. Hopefully this marks the start of an Epitaph resurgence. At the very least, we may see Ryan and Dan Andriano burying the hatchet. Gauge the chances of both by going to the Epitaph site here and bagging a copy of In Desolation. Off With Their Heads are back on the road, check here to see dates for the first hundred or so shows. I'll see you locals at the Knit next week.


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