ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
Billy Talent’s new record is an extremely impressive
debut for a group of punks from Mississauga. The album brims
with angst-ridden anger as vocalist Ben Kowalewicz lets out
years of pent-up rage about his teenagehood, his high school
life and society in general.
A great deal of hype surrounded the release of BT’s first
album, but luckily, the band seems capable of living up to
it. The hard-driving punk feel of the album’s leadoff
single, “Try Honesty,” is only intensified as the
album continues. Standout sounds include the sincere strains
of “Standing in the Rain,” as well as the brutally
poignant irony of “Lies,” in which Kowalewicz declares: “Lies
make it better/ Lies are forever/ Lies to go home to/ Lies
to wake up to.”
Billy Talent are an extremely pleasant alternative to the Simple-Plan-By-Choice
clones clogging up the industry.
You Know The Rules
You can’t help but compare The New Pornographers, whose
infectious sophomore album has been steadily rocking the charts
at CHRW 94.9 FM, and The Gay — who, for clarification
purposes, are two separate bands and not one sex supergroup.
They share a label, a producer (Kurt Dahle) and have even toured
together. However, it would be wrong for cynical indie-rockers
to dismiss You Know the Rules as ‘New Pornographers Lite.’ Although
similar, each band has a unique style.
The Gay are the kids on the street playing under a tree with
acoustic guitars and an accordion while vegans, keeners and
hippies dance around them like butterflies. The New Pornographers
are the ones across the street with their amps turned way up,
their hair saturated with grease and their T-shirts faded from
wear (not the Abercrombie faded).
Dahle is the bridge between the two, the New Pornographer who
crossed the road and brought a little kick to The Gay. You
Know The Rules is a great pop-rock album with unforgettable
upbeat melodies you can’t help but move your pale white
— Colin Fleming