The D.C.-based Carlsonics form noise, head-bobbing rhythm and the occasional cacophony of clashing guitar chords into 11 tracks that capture angst, excitement and fun on their debut self-titled LP. Aaron Carlson (lead vocals) sometimes speaks rather than sings the abrasive lyrics into the microphone, punctuating the hard edge of the songs with the whiny tinge in his voice. At times, this rock band has a little bit of a jam band feel with extended instrumental play between vocals. But it's really a garage sound that's at the heart of their music. The appeal of Edward Donohue and John Passmore's guitar riffs is inexorable. Match that with Mike Scutari's throbbing drums and you get an instant energy boost as you listen to the first track, "The Leisure Class."
This band is certainly not fresh on the music scene. They released two EPs prior to the LP and have toured the country (mostly the northeast) for the past couple of years. Their experience gives them the comfort level that a band sometimes needs to let loose while onstage and in the studio. Listening to this CD, you'll get no sense that the members' creativity was stymied by a label exec or producer. The sound is raw. They are not afraid to experiment with their songs. Yet, they have the discipline to retain a solid structure in each piece, making their LP appealing to a wide audience.