The Commodes

Cursed From the Beginning (Self-released)

Blame Green Day for refashioning "punk" as a watered-down pop subspecies that tries to elevate the state of suburban tedium into some kind of political outrage -- the kind where the only thing being suppressed is the view beyond the big, scary hedge in a well-manicured front yard. Look no further than the Commodes' latest five-song EP for another monochromatic Dookie retread of contrived disgust and post-adolescent sniveling. Angry without really knowing why, Jimmy Savage and the boys from the mean streets of Littleton (L-town?!) specialize in youthful, exuberant and well-mannered tunes about lost love, halfhearted suicide pacts and raging hormones. They call it "no coast toilet rock," which, despite all the guitar crunch and airtight interplay, deteriorates into nothing but a punk-free snooze. At least the kids have good taste in movies: "Remember Sammy Jankis" references Memento, a psychological thriller whose protagonist suffers from anteretrogade amnesia, or the inability to make new memories. It's the kind of mental condition that would come in really handy after listening to this forgettable ode to Billie Joe's poop chute.

 
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