An album of boy-girl coos and combustible pop produced by Steve Albini? Is it the Pixies? Well, on "Meat is Murder Mobile" it could be. But even though Royal Oak's New Grenada has that anxious thing down pat on Modern Problems, and recorded the album with the famously cantankerous Albini, they seem to want more than mere posturing to the past. Of course, that's both a good and bad thing. Problems opens with the keyboard-driven catchiness of "Emergency Brigade" and carries that through on "Chumps," a freak-out of electronics and punk leanings propelled by pounding drums and wild screaming. But New Grenada loses its way on "El Paso" and "Infections," settling in a middle ground of pop-punk and posturing to bland MTV accessibility, and lyrics like bassist-vocalist Nicole Allie's "You lie and you steal and you cheat/trample people under your feet/You better treat me right" sound trite despite her growling Le Tigre delivery. New Grenada really nails it when focusing on what it does best gristly tributes to vintage indie rock spread across sugary hooks. But Modern Problems ends up being only decent, since the band gets hung up on replication instead of following their own vision.
Luke Hackney writes about music for Metro Times. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Detroit Metro Times. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Detroit Metro Times, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.
Email us at email@example.com.
Detroit Metro Times works for you, and your support is essential.
Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Detroit and beyond.
Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.
Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Detroit's true free press free.