Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Listen to Samples
A dense, swirling pop gallery
Michael Heminger | Pardeeville, WI | 12/27/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"How can it be that people haven't reviewed this great band?? O.K., if you haven't heard them before, you owe it to yourself to do so. Yes, they can be compared to Minne-mates Husker Du, but only in the sense that they play loud, heady pop songs. Whereas the Huskers took a more straightforward approach to songwriting, Arcwelder gives off a more nebulous feel, as if an album sort of 'happens' when they get together. Live, the trading of bass and guitar between the brothers Graber lends the feeling that we are watching something being born - perhaps for the first time. Many songs here convey the feeling of being drawn into something dense and swirling ("Criminal") yet not entirely hostile. Another effective Arcwelder mood is the bored yet articulate pensiveness found in "Will When You Won't", featuring (uncredited) horns that add to the I-dont-wanna-go-outside rainy feeling. Their methods border on madness at times, and a penchance for distorted vocals (Bill Graber) and crashing noise cadences can become distracting or downright annoying, but the quality of songs here will still hold your interest. Some of Bill's songs take us on a tinny, trebly ride that prefers a dronelike linearity over chord changes, and can create an evocative mood such as the eastern-tinged "Lahabim". Scott Macdonald's vocals have been compared to those of Bob Mould, with personal themes shrouded in more complexity and dense tones.All this may sound too serious, but the 'Welder boys are usually either rocking out or poking fun at themselves, as in the opening cut "Truth" where Bill reminds us "When it's all done/This is just a song". "What Did You Call It That For" may be a hint at its title's irrelevance to the subject matter, but the seriousness of the spinning riff will keep you guessing with each successive play."
One of the 90's Best Albums
Michael B. Richman | Portland, Maine USA | 07/01/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I can't believe no one has bothered to review this album. This is no question one of the best indie/alt rock albums of the early 90s. I rank it up there with Superchunk's "Foolish," Seam's "The Problem With Me, "Nevermind," and "Crooked Rain." There must be something in the water in the Twin Cities, because Arcwelder have picked up where the Replacements and Husker Du left off. With the Graber brothers (Bill and Rob) switching back and forth on guitar and bass, and drummer Scott Macdonald sharing vocal duties with Bill, Arcwelder mixes it up a little yet maintains a consistent post-punk, melodic power. Songs "Truth" and "Raleigh" are as good as any anthem in the power-pop canon. "And Then Again" is a heartfelt, nostalgic gem and my personal favorite. "Criminal" adds a wonderful rhythmic twist to plow ahead, while the subtle piano solo on "Finish My Song" makes me think of an overcast Minneapolis winter day. The album overall maintains a certain gloomy edge, but there is too much hope, potential and excellent songwriting to become bogged down in a quagmyre. If you feel that indie rock is dying (as I do), go get this CD -- it will recapture the past glory."
Overlylord knows best.
donkeye | all up in your face | 11/17/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I believe the review by the Overlylord is one that puts it best. This is a killer good album. I dream about it. I dream about its goodness and cry while asleep, which scares the dickens about my girlfriend, especially when I yelp, Pull! Pull! Pull! Arcwelder!!"