As soon as Neat Repeater begins and Michael Lux nasally yells, “I get this feeling,” one thing comes to mind-Paul Weller. I haven’t checked any of the other press on the debut Ep from the side project of the guitarist and one of the vocalists of Chicago band Hollus, but I’ll put money on a similar take on Lux’s voice. The Jam is all over Neat Repeater. The thing is, the Jam were never this good. Lux may sound like a carbon copy of Weller at times, but Lux and the Bad Sons have turned out 5 consistently great garage punk/post punk tunes. It’s an Ep of 5 “In the City”s or “Modern World”s without the filler.
One indicator of a well done album or Ep is when each song is your favorite while it’s playing. When “So Loud” begins, you’re sure it can’t get any better. ”Posies” comes next and you start to doubt yourself with it’s Jam-like refrain and oddly but fitting Americana-style verses. Just when you think you have this group pegged as a Jam wannabe, they surprise you with a ballad..sort of. It still has the same bite as the first two, but with a gentler, dreamlike quality.
The only song that nearly misses is the closer, “Saturday’s Boys.” Perhaps it’s just me being cynical, but you lose me with overly sentimental nostalgia. You could almost see the 80s montage music video. The song itself, however, is just as strong as the other 4 on Neat Repeater.
No shows scheduled yet but I suggest checking in once in a while to see what’s going on with this group. I expect to be hearing a lot from these guys in the near future.