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The Vasco Era – The Vasco Era

on November 28, 2011, 7:58am
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There must be something in the warm Pacific Ocean water that surrounds Australia. Every few years, a new band seems to emerge from the musical bush there, ready to assume the title of the next Great Rock Hope. By the fuzzy sounds enclosed on their self-titled, Inertia-released third full-length album, The Vasco Eraappear to be willing to take their shot at rock glory. Or at least go out with a loud, breakup sex-worthy bang.

The Vasco Era starts off innocently enough with a quiet guitar solo that leads into opening song “Na Na Na Na”, not to be confused with “Na Na Na (Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na)” by My Chemical Romance. That lasts for a grand total of :23 seconds, upon which the distortion pedals kick in, as do the accusatory lyrics that only let up a couple of times over the next 43 minutes. Their Wikipedia page characterizes them as a rock/blues band, but besides the third track being titled “Avatar Blues”, this is about as raucous and hedonistic a ride as they come. Actually, almost everything about what this album is trying to say can be summarized in seventh song “Rock and Roll Is the Only Thing That Makes Me Feel Good,” whose videoviews like an ode to hard living, overhyped Aussie predecessors Jet and The Vines.

There are ear-perking tempo changes and aborted song endings throughout the album that harken back to Nirvana’s Nevermind, or even Thank You, Happy Birthday from Cage the Elephant earlier this year. Frontman Sid O’Neil is constantly wailing, whether it’s while singing or playing guitar. Reportedly, he puts on a great live show with his bassist brother Ted and drummer Michael Fitzgerald. Here’s hoping he’s takes more after Nick Cave than Nic Chester, longevity-wise, and that we’ll see The Vasco Era on North American shores soon.

Essential Tracks: “Rock and Roll Is the Only Thing That Makes Me Feel Good”, “Na Na Na Na”, and “Child Bearing Hips”

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