Over the course of this 12-song album, Pretty Girls take Zollo's exhortation to heart, and make it their mission statement. Formed from the remnants of several Pacific Northwest bands, including the much-admired Murder City Devils, Pretty Girls Make Graves come across as simultaneously raw and intricate. Their push-pull rhythms and caterwauling guitars recall At the Drive-In, but with a layer of intertwining six-string delicacy missing from that band's persistent attack.
| CD SPOTLIGHT |
PRETTY GIRLS MAKE GRAVES
The New Romance
In "The Teeth Collector," she depicts an ex-lover's words as "cancer in my mouth," warning, "I'll pluck you like a dead bug from my feet."
Zollo's most persistent theme is the desperate need to seize the moment, even turning a heroin-addiction cautionary tale like "All Medicated Geniuses" into a lament for wasted opportunities, singing, "All motivations out to sea/and our ideas die so quickly."
It's not an insult to say that this band's name - derived from a Smiths song - is the most memorable thing about it: Because on The New Romance, the music isn't far behind. •