The New Suburbans

The New Suburbans

CD review by Roger-Z

News flash! Contrary to current rumors, the marriage of hard-driving rock and intelligent lyrics survives. We can thank The New Suburbans for that. This New England-based trio consists of Geoff MacAdie on bass/guitar/keyboard/vocals, Dan Ash on guitar/vocals, and Rowen Jordan Caplan on drums/vocals.

I love a song title that plants tongue firmly in cheek -- as with "You're Always Right." This album drips with sarcasm. "You're the triumph of style over substance." "Beauty's only skin deep; ugly's to the bone." The most telling lines appear in the Jim Hendrix-inspired "Don't Lick Me" -- "How long does it take before you really know someone? Is it just about the time that the physical part of the relationship stops being fun?"

The top-flight musicianship artfully draws attention to the lyrics. From the opening wisps of howling feedback, Dan Ash's standout guitar drives home the message. I call this tasteful aggression served up with a dollop of psychedelia.

The New Suburbans appear to have it all -- great lyrics, melodies, and musicianship. But can they cut it live? Although I haven't seen the band play, I did enjoy jamming with guitarist Dan Ash on a number of occasions. He really cooks.

Like they used to say on "American Bandstand," "The record's got a good beat and I like the words."

2003 Roger-Z