Jeff Rosenstock - POST-
I don't know why I have avoided this record up until now, but something about the thought of reviewing another politically charged Indie Rock album felt like an absolute chore. The amount of stumbling and trying to make sense of our political situation in the United States has been beaten to absolute death. This album opens with a five second weird sort of intro into the over seven minute opus "USA". The song closes on Rosenstock leading the chant of "we're tired, we're bored" a sentiment we all can get behind at this point. The album sounds like early, DIY Brand New especially on songs like "All the Useless Energy" with this vaguely punk aesthetic. This is the kind of music that critics love: super heady, politically charged, punk adjacent indie rock which is why the album is topping best of 2018 lists all over the place. I just don't see it. Sure Rosenstock has some things to say on POST- and He wants to continue to good favor his album that came out just before the 2016 election garnered him, but nothing feels new here. The music is dated, the lyrics are tired and the sentiments are such well worn territory that it is harder than hell to actually care. To still be this triggered this deep into Trump's presidency feels more than a bit childish. I'm not saying that there should not be anti-Trump music, quite the opposite actually, but it can't be the exact same complaints and the exact same sentiments for this long. Get up shake off the dirt and figure out a way to push forward. As an extension of WORRY this album works, but it should have come out 4 months after, not well over a year. We've just had to long top sit in this fucked up feeling to want to hear it spoken back at us anymore.
Rosenstock can clearly write a song as many of these have a very strong sense of melody and pace, but the subject matter is so one note. The album is almost completely devoid of hope save for a couple of tracks and a few passing mentions that things might just be ok. Then there is the albums closer the eleven minute "Let Them Win" which is so overly long I can't even begin to fathom why He thought this was appropriate. Almost half the song is just a synth playing a few held notes through a mountain of fuzz. It makes entirely no sense and leads the listener no where other than frustration. Even if Rosenstock was trying to portray some kind of unified front, the five minutes of nothing is so self indulgent. I truly get that this album has something to say, and the punk delivery is a nice bit of fresh air, but god the subject matter is such a fucking slog that who has the time or the patience for this? In order to get what Rosenstock is saying you'll have to print out the lyrics are read along. That's not what I'm looking for from an album, and I don't think most people are either.
5.9 out of 10