Jews and Catholics' Who Are? We Think We Are! | Record Review | Indy Week
Pin It

Jews and Catholics' Who Are? We Think We Are! 

(307 Knox Records)

There's danger in being a duo. Two people find a sound they're comfortable with and, lacking the pull of a gaggle of bandmates, they never challenge it. They write a good song or two, and they mostly fail to replicate those past glories. Recently, see Japandroids. But there's promise in being a duo, too. Aware of their stylistic and technical limitations, two people push each other to find a different sound, to write a different song, to find ingenious ways to accomplish what might be easy for bigger ensembles. Recently, see No Age.

On Who Are? We Think We Are!, the engaging if overloaded full-length debut of Jews and Catholics, the Winston-Salem duo goes a long way in avoiding the trap of contentment: Guitarist Eddie Garcia is capable of wiry lines that smolder with a Western ache ("The Spring") or ignite with a post-punk urgency ("Golden Arrow"). And upright bassist Alanna Meltzer seems as comfortable plucking big rock lines from her strings ("Fevers") as she is adding dark textural foils with her bow ("Zombie Teeth").

Despite their size, Meltzer, Garcia and a drum machine that moves from industrial-sized wallop to electro-ready skitters suggest a handful of indie monsters: From The Ex and Mission of Burma to Sonic Youth and Archers of Loaf, Jews and Catholics conjure a surprisingly varied lot of styles and structures, wedding it all with memorable, slightly agitated melodies. "Dear Alexa" builds into an excellent reverse avalanche of discord and drama, for instance, while the chiming if anxious "Thank God I Don't Live in Your Eyes" springs along steadily. You'll be able to put both in your pocket.

The duo format only manifests itself as weakness on We Are with respect to editing. Despite the veteran production of Mitch Easter and Cheetie Kumar, the songs blur a bit because almost all of them hang around a bit too long. Whether it's a guitar solo that's indulgent or one more refrain that's excessive, We Are tends to overstate its points. But by and large, they're frequently good points from a band that's finally found—and captured—its exciting, involved sound.


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Record Review

Twitter Activity

Most Recent Comments

Love it! All the songs are beautiful!

by Jon Champion on Record Review: The Return of The Veldt, The Shocking Fuzz of Your Electric Fur: The Drake Equation, Is Great (Record Review)

This release will be available Friday December 4th here:

Thanks! …

by Scott Phillips on Review: The electronic excellence of GNØER's Tethers Down (Record Review)

You should have let Currin write this. One of the best singers on earth and these were your observations? sounds …

by Remo on Record review: Jeanne Jolly's A Place to Run (Record Review)


Most Read

© 2016 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation