Switchfoot, Rock and Roll Machine

Switchfoot
Oh! Gravity
Sony/BMG
3/5
Entertaining ‘modern alternative’ rock from Californians Switchfoot. The experienced production team of Steve Lillywhite and Tim Palmer make for a seamless listen as the band moves between crunchy Green Day-ish pop punk, and expansive Coldplay territory (‘Yesterdays’). The clumsy polemics of ‘American Dream’ (‘I want out of this machine/It doesn’t feel like freedom’) are a little dire, but there are plenty of enjoyable moments too, when the band strips back the fancy production and lightens up (‘Amateur lovers’, ‘4:12’).

Rock and Roll Machine
Rock and Roll Machine
(Self released)
5/5
Auckland rockists Rock and Roll Machine offer up nine songs in 26 squealing, breathless minutes. Admirably heavy and polished sounding given that the DIY recording was done partly in a garage, the band strikes just the right balance of melody and chaos. Inevitably, the slightly cartoonish seventies-rock-worshipping steez will remind you of The Datsuns, but there’s also a little of The Yeah Yeah Yeahs in their roomy three piece squawk, and good whiff of The Stooges’ Raw Power too.

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