A horrible hack

San Lorenzo

Nothing New Ever Works

Year Released: 2000
Format: LP
Label: Gringo
 
Reviewed by Andy Malcolm on Jun 13, 2007
I really hope Gringo didn't press too many of these, because I am sure that practically no-one knows who this band are. Yet the album is available on 12" and CD. Which is a little worrying. Whilst I am here and waffling, I must say that the picture of a thousand cars rusting away on the back of the LP both makes a point, and is also emo. Broken machinery is very emo.

Who San Lorenzo are is one of the better indie rock bands in our tiny little nation. Because they have taste in music, they opt for a US post-hardcore indie rock influence rather than a British one. It opens up on a rather seemingly downbeat number where the boy singer vocalises slightly weakly over some repetetive keyboard that I hope was generated with the giant relic that they used when I saw them in Leicester. At the end the guitars chug in a hardcore fashion, and you notice SL have some energy. Following that is a rather nice, twinklesome acoustic number which I can quite easily imagine being a sensible Joan of Arc song.

A couple of songs from their 2 previous 7" are resurrected for reconsumption on this record. "Life Without Mountains" being rather grand, lots of build ups and clever switches between quiet and LOUD as post-hardcore dictates. Eventually the guy softly talks some words over a rumbling drumbeat and some occasional guitar twangs, and the song continues to build in a quirky fashion that my mother thought was very 60's and drug influenced. Heh. Then all of a sudden it explodes into rock and the guy sing-shouts the rest of the way home.

I think they could make use of their girl vocals a bit more often, as she has a dead on voice, and helps them sound vaguely like Rainer Maria do when they go all twinklesome and quiet. Other points of note - the first song on the B side features some very strange vox indeed. It sounds the Kommandant of Colditz is hollering the words. And then there is the story a guy tells about a dream that is just plain fucked up.

This band really is lost here in the UK. San Lorenzo neither fit in with the bizarrely popular emo indie rock scene, nor the NME indie whore scene, so god knows how they are going to shift any copies of these because they are simply not cool enough for anyone. And ain't that the truth.

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