I’m sure I’m not alone in wondering what would happen if Placebo fell into a blender with Billy Corgan’s wankery and a large pile of urine-soaked rags. But I may know the answer: something a lot better than this damn Loudermilk album.
So far as I can tell, Loudermilk is one of those bands that heavily favors style over substance and is simultaneously wildly pretentious and thoroughly insecure about their music. What a dangerous concoction this Loudermilk is. The type of band that gets really mad when you make fun of the aesthetics in lieu of the music in a review. “But did you listen to the record, man?” they’ll ask. Unfortunately, yes, and I have no desire to ever hear it again. I can sympathize with every reviewer who has to listen to boring bands like this and find themselves forgetting about the record as soon as its over while still having to write a few paragraphs about it.
My first impression of The Red Record was that James Iha and D’arcy decided to get back together without Billy and Jimmy after they heard about the formation of Zwan. It was also my last impression of the album, as the sound never steered away from the formula presented in the opening track, “Estrogen Oxygen Aches in the Teeth Again.”
But don’t get me wrong; Loudermilk seems to be really comfortable in the mediocre musical terrain they’ve chosen for themselves. I can’t tell the difference between “97 Ways to Kill a Superhero” and “Rock N Roll and the Teenage Desperation,” except that one has a dumber title than the other. The only song that stands out here is “Anthema,” because they cranked the Smashing Pumpkins worship knob up to max for it. They turned it back down immediately afterwards, though, and finished the album doing whatever bands who want to do nothing but make money do, i.e. waste my time. I’d rather be buried alive with Carrot Top than continue this review or ever have to listen to The Red Record ever again.