Friday, July 6, 2012

Black Cross - "Let Me Sink" (Dylan's Dumb iPod #17)

These three song EP's (cleverely titled Sink, Knives and Chrome) were officially "released" at an exclusive Black Cross show in 2004 (?). I was grounded so I had to have my good friend Keith pick it up for me. High school was a bummer.

Black Cross was a band I don't think I fully appreciated at the time, though I saw them plenty of times. They were Louisville mainstays, played a ton of shows and I liked 'em, but I don't think I ever LOVED them the way many others did. I preferred Coliseum. Looking back, Art Offensive is a really cool album, and listening to it now it really speaks (sings) to me and makes me realize how unique Louisville's music scene really was. Still, Rob Pennington's vocals are an acquired taste and have always been a stumbling block for this reviewer. Also, I never really got that into Endpoint. Kinghorse on the other hand...

Pushead? Who wants Pushead?
Anyway, a totally serendipitous moment happened when I started writing for a magazine in Salt Lake City called SLUG and when I went in for my interview, I saw a Black Cross sticker on their trashcan. Being a nostalgic ninny, I got all bleary-eyed and longed for home.

The CD pacakging for this was awesome, I think it was hand-screened on some heavy cardstock, but if I remember correctly the disc itself was just a CD-R. Auxilliary Records, which was (is?) Ryan Patterson's label and bore his distinct visual aesthetic.

Anyway, La Cruza Negra (That's mexi-speak, pendejo) was doing that wirey post-punk thing at this point and I remember thinking that it was great musically, but seemed like throwaway cuts compared to Art Offensive's material. I didn't hate it, and listening to it now, I can key into its brilliance. It honestly reminds me of the stuff Coliseum did on the Parasites EP last year. If I have to pick the standout track of these three, "Playing with Knives" takes the cake because I love those ringing guitar lines.

Maximum Louisville

Quick and (not that) funny Black Cross anecdote, lots of kids at my high school had the hoodie that kind of looked like a motorcycle gang logo. Once at lunch, our janitor came to our table to talk to my friend Brandon about it...and it took forever for him to realize that none of us knew anything about motorcycles.

Also, if we're being honest Severance Pays was a really boring record.

To my knowledge, Sink, Knives and Chrome is pretty long out of print, so go download it and see what you think. Also, it ain't on Youtube, so just watch a live set.

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