Dirt Cult (2018)
Let's cut to the chase. This record is phenomenal. Go buy it right now. If you are wondering if there is a great record out there that's slipping below your radar, this is the one you're worried about. Stop what you are doing and go buy it immediately.
I can't possibly say enough good things about this album. The Pretty Flowers have created a perfect storm of fuzzy guitar riffs, incredibly catchy hooks and lyrical melodies that are impossible to get out of your head. From the opening salvo of "Cream Of Canvas," you are instantly drawn into to its big Weezer-esque guitar solo (Blue album era Weezer, not that stuff they're doing on one of those recent Weezer albums that you didn't even know came out). The guitars keep building up until that flawless chorus hits. It's a killer song and only the first of many that await.
Let's move on to track three, "Some Girls." I can say without a bit of trepidation that this is the best non-Hot Snakes song that has come out all year. It's fucking perfect. Once again, a short lead guitar riff punctuates the hook, and the vocals are constantly rattling around in my head, made even more impactful with the harmonies that kick in on verse two. I have probably listened to this song a hundred times since I got this record (I've likely listened to the whole thing about fifty times or so). It gets better every single time I hear it.
The rest of the album continues this excellence. Whether the song veers towards a mellower Weakerthans vibe like on "Chip My Paint" or if they're blasting into full on Built To Spill guitar insanity like on "Temple of Gunpowder," The Pretty Flowers hit every single song out of the park.
In a year where John Reis didn't put out an album, Why Trains Crash is almost a shoe in for album of the year. Even with a Hot Snakes record on heavy rotation, I've been playing this Pretty Flowers album kind of non-stop the last few weeks. After hearing this, I immediately ordered the band's other two 7"s and a T shirt from their Bandcamp page. Anything I can do to support them and hear more music. This is that kind of band, the one where you hear their record and you just know you're probably going to be listening to it for the rest of your life. Go buy this now.
The Pretty Flowers - Why Trains Crash: