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Album Review
East General

East General
by The Bitters

Mexican Summer

Review Date
27th May 2010
Reviewed by

Initially attracted to The Bitters by tracks “Travelin Girl” and “Wild Beasts”, I sought out the album East General, finding it on Brooklyn based label Mexican Summer. On first listen, I wasn’t that taken with it. I struggle with modern lo-fi sometimes, few do it well and the rest just sound like crap and it’s annoying – I find myself wishing they had just recorded it properly however “beside the point” and stupid that is.

Sensing something special and not ready to give up, I kept listening and am now happy to report that The Bitters do lo-fi well, very well actually. East General’s scuzzy quality gives the album character and atmosphere – it’s grungy, sexy, fun and easily sits well above anything else I’ve listened to this year. It just has attitude and will make you want to get out your eyeliner, strut around and get into trouble – like any good punk record should.

The Bitters hail from Toronto Canada and are Ben Cook from Fucked Up and Aerin Fogel (plus various guest members when performing live). Their sound is familiar and reminiscent of late 70s/80s girl punk, mainly due to Fogel’s vocals, which are amazing and do really make this band stand out - she reminds me of Siouxsie Sioux which is never a bad thing. It’s definitely not all flash back though, rolled in there is a bit of post rock at it’s best with full instrumental “Bitters Bust” and both aforementioned “Travelin Girl” and “Wild Beasts” featuring awesome late song changes.

Definitely have a listen and give it time to warm, it's available digitally and on vinyl from Mexican Summer.

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