Friday, September 5, 2008

Red Red Meat - There's a Star Above The Manger Tonight

Red Red Meat has a lot of nerve. Unlike so many of its too timid indie rock peers, the Chicago quartet dares to tamper with what brung 'em. Yes, remnants remain of the Stones-inspired chunky chords and driving beats that marked the early work of frontman Tim Rutili and company. With There's a Star, however, the Meat men dig deeper into that "Main Street" morass than ever before, emerging on turf they can call their own. Not that they don't get lost occasionally along the way. Mixing everything from dissonant guitar skronk to backwoods banjo music, they frequently find themselves clinging to the unsteady frame of these songs by the tips of their red, red fingers. But perhaps they had to venture into uncharted territory to arrive where they have. --Steven Stolder