Dinosaur Pile-Up – Nature Nurture
Energetic, anthemic grunge is still the name of the game on Dinosaur Pile-Up's follow up to their debut Growing Pains. Just like on that LP, band founder Matt Bigland wrote and recorded all parts on Nature Nurture, a 35-minute whirl of fast-to-mid-tempo bangers, the kind for which anyone vaguely familiar with the past twenty years of guitar music will have a reference point.
There's an even larger emphasis on pop this time: opener Arizona Waiting immediately reaches for a hook that sticks, and each song that follows is similarly built around infectious melodies, but Bigland is too content with showing his influences (Foo Fighters, Ash, Pixies, a million others) without really updating or building upon any. Once the initial adrenaline rush subsides, it all begins to drag. Though there isn't any filler so to speak, Nurture is simply too formulaic and lacking in ambition to recommend. [Ross Watson]