Independent Clauses | n. —unusual words about underappreciated music

Latterman-We Are Still Alive

September 1, 2006

Band: Latterman

Album Name: …We Are Still Alive

Best Element: Sincerity

Genre: Punk Rock

Website: www.lattermanband.com

Label: Deep Elm Records

Band E-mail: lattermanband@hotmail.com

It’s not everyday you hear genuine punk rock anymore- let alone competent punk rock. Yet Latterman, a four piece punk band from Long Island, NY, have achieved just that with their latest album …We Are Still Alive. As the title implies, it pays homage to the finer days of punk: back in the glory days, before the corporations realized there was money in punk rock, skateboards and ridiculously strong hair gel.

On trying to review this CD I kept picking out these little minor flaws: off-shot production, key issues on vocal harmonies, swaggers in the tempo etc…yet none of this made the album any less enjoyable. Generally speaking, I would have been off-set by these annoyances. Then it clicked in!

SINCERITY…. Yep- sincerity. That was it. None of the so-called “flaws” even mattered. This album has heart, which is something no engineer, click track, or vocal instructor can get for you. Out of a field over-saturated in piles of manure comes four guys who break through the barriers and overcome all the obstacles thrown at them just by picking up their instruments and rocking out. As a musician there is nothing more gratifying then loving what you do… and through Latterman’s music (and lyrics) there is no question that despite the hard times and sorry state of the mainstream media they have accomplished what a very small percentage of musicians can achieve: SATISFACTION.

Though a short listen, …We Are Still Alive is entirely gratifying with ten songs balancing just over the 30 minute mark. All songs are good, but my personal favorites would have to be “Mumbled Words and Ridiculous Faces”, “I Decided Not to Do Them”, and “This Basement Gives Me a F*cking Headache”. Also I really like the album closer, “Will this be on the Test?”, which ends things off on a solid note by declaring at the end of the song: “I’m still learning, We’re all still learning that we never have enough space but we seem so far away. I’m listening.”

And I, for one, will keep listening for more from Latterman! And if you feel like something is lacking in your punk rock diet I suggest you start listening to this immediately.

-Josh Hogan

josh@orchidscurse.com

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Stephen Carradini and friends write reviews of bands that are trying to make the next step in their careers.

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