in case you can’t keep all of buck’s random bands straight, filthy friends is centered around the songwriting partnership of peter buck and corin tucker (sleater-kinney), with bill rieflin (replaced by linda pitmon on their second album), scott mccaughey (of course), and kurt bloch.
when their first album came out, i dismissed it as just OK. last weekend, i picked up a cheap vinyl copy — finding an $8 record was a great chance to revisit it.
i’m glad i did — it’s super solid! i’m not gonna say a great record, but definitely not a disappointment like i once thought. buck turns in some awesome r.e.m.-ish riffs, and there’s lots of vibrant guitar interplay. rieflin sounds more energized than he ever did with r.e.m… corin tucker has a powerful, commanding voice and her lyrics are above average.
overall what brings it down for me is the lack of strong hooks. without many distinct melodies, the songs can blur together. at times the vocals bulldoze the music, diminishing its impact. also, the bland recording/production that doesn’t present the material in the best light.
still, it’s hard to criticize this low stakes album made by some friends who also happens to be legendary musicians with their own bands. they didn’t have to make this record, you know? i’m on the lookout for their second album now too.
i wanted to start this topic to see what others think of this group. anyone catch them live? any preference between their 2 LPs? any word on a third album?