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The Strain: Dog Walk and Hot Garbage Reviewed

Hot Garbage – Snooze You Lose

Similar artists: Sonic Youth, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, Osees, Frankie and the Witch Fingers, Joy Division

Genre: Post-Punk, Psychedelic Rock, Garage Rock

Go to any religious ceremony or philosophy class and be ready to be told that it is far better to be sad than happy that the best ideas arise out of this. When it comes to rock music, you’ll hear a similar idea – it’s better to be loud than subtle. It is what the music critics preach and a truth that Hot Garbage guide themselves by. 

Loud rock music can easily make the listener feel confused. That’s a great start! It’s not the only thing of importance, but if a rock song should do anything, it should challenge your perception of the world, or, at least, challenge your ability to walk in a straight line after hearing it. With so little of the world that is known, it’s natural that these sounds would appeal to many. 

Hot Garbage’s “Snooze You Lose” sound like prog-rockers who have rebelled against the movement and who are now focused on creating music that sounds as aggressive, unkept, and as minimalist-designed as possible. The Canadians design both their image and their music to appear made by some kind of terrorists. This desire to spread confusion is a noble one. 


Dog Walk – I Saw You On the Dance Floor

Similar artists: Mac DeMarco

Genre: Lo-fi Rock, Indie Pop, Garage Rock

Every time you think of suggesting to your friends that the music that they are listening to sounds too pretty and too nicely produced, somebody at a record company has just cashed in a small check. It’s just how it works these days. It takes a million writers, producers, and managers to get a song going. Are all those needed? Dog Walk seems to be doing it all as a solo act. 

You really ought to consider letting Lo-Fi music make a dent in your life. After all, if you’ve been listening to the radio for much of it, then it is bound to have a profoundly psychedelic effect on you. Songs created in someone’s kitchen and recorded on cheap equipment with only the artist’s imagination to guide it will sound alien to anyone with a record collection that’s been pre-approved by a record label. 

Dog Walk’s “I Saw You On the Dance Floor” feels like the soundtrack to drinking expensive craft beer at the local hipster brew store and then recording the night’s experiences on the cheap recording gear at home. There’s something innocent and earnest about it all. There’s also something powerful about going out in the world this way without having to ask permission for your art. Dog Walk makes lo-fi, high-brow, cheaply-produced indie rock. 

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