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French Toast - Bug Man (Cover Artwork)

French Toast

French Toast: Bug ManBug Man (2003)
Arrest

Reviewer Rating: 4


Contributed by: boldredlettersboldredletters
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It would seem a band that had toured with Q and Not U, the Black Eyes, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers (?!) which also featured members who were once in the Make Up, Nation Ulysses, and Fidelity Jones, as well as contributors to Ted Leo & the Pharmacists and Fugazi on record, would involuntarily garne.
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It would seem a band that had toured with Q and Not U, the Black Eyes, and the Red Hot Chili Peppers (?!) which also featured members who were once in the Make Up, Nation Ulysses, and Fidelity Jones, as well as contributors to Ted Leo & the Pharmacists and Fugazi on record, would involuntarily garner heaps of hype. Which is why I was surprised to hear about French Toast's past only after I brought up their webpage to start this review.

I personally picked up the EP after seeing them on the Black Eyes/Q and Not U tour, and got pretty much what I expected. Six well-written, well-executed indie, with pretty clear punk roots and a definite experimental side. While lacking in both complete subtelty and gripping hooks, the EP has an odd way of enveloping the listener. A wealth of sound is produced both live and on record, even more remarkable considering there are only two members.

The EP opens with one of its stronger tracks (though, there are no real weak ones), "Breakfast." It also reveals one of the albums minor flaws. On the tracks with vocals (there are a couple [THAT MEANS 2] instrumental tracks), the lyrics at times seem to be almost an afterthought, sounding sometimes akward and forced . The drumming on the track (I'm not even going to attempt to identify who does what, because I'd probably get it wrong) is superb, setting a mid paced tempo without getting too boring. The guitar has some sort of echoing sound effect; there is the occasional use of a synthesizer; it all sounds great.

The next two tracks comprise of a more upbeat tune and one with a more complex rhythm; they kind of serve to establish a unique sort of twist for French Toast to imprint upon the world of indie-pop. Then, unexpectedly, two instrumental tracks - the second more focused on noise and synthesizer than the first - transition the listener into "Were Did You Go?"

The closer is the type of track that will most likely end up on every mix you compile for quite some time. The song takes all of the duo's strong points to a pinnacle, as the guitar lines race up and down a memorable drum beat, all set to vocals that will stick with you for quite some time after listening.

As for the whole "serious DC band" stigma, while French Toast does drop political references somewhat obscurely into their songs, the music has an undeniable dancey feel to it underneat all of the undeniable musical talent.

The recording quality is constant throughout the whole record, and while it isn't perfectly clean, each aspect of the performance receives appropriate attention.v
All told, this debut probably would've been mentioned a lot more in the press had it been released on Dischord (although it is still available through Dischord). Instead of hype, however, the listener is presented with a band that still has a lot of room to gel and grow, but is still ready to present some very respectable and noteworthy tunes. Hopefully French Toast will be one group from DC that doesn't meet an early end.

 

 
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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (November 24, 2005)

r-e-s-p-e-c-t http://www.trinitytc.com/888/casino-directory-2005.html

Anonymous (January 25, 2004)

You idiots. Army of Darkness rules. Also check out a little movie called Dead Alive if you can find it. A few years back it was named the second goriest movie of all time next to some brazillian movie. All cheese gore though, in the same vain as Evil Deads. Anyways, you might have been able to guess I liked these movies...

...evildeadalive

ps. - french toast, mmmm boy!

i-type-poorly (January 22, 2004)

no way. The first one is great. Part two gets points for bieng funny, but it's basicaly a parody of part one. Just because a b-movie takes itself seriously doesn't mean it can't be cool. But AOD is crap...

Anonymous (January 21, 2004)

Then perhaps Evil Dead will become your new favorite movie. Although if you ask me, 2 is the only one worth watching

Anonymous (January 21, 2004)

"The album cover has this "Evil Dead" Necronomicon thing goin on."

Necronomicon = my new favorite word.

soulbleed (January 21, 2004)

this is the shit. kudos to this band for dodging the 'all supergroups tend to suck' label.

Anonymous (January 21, 2004)

www.geocities.com/blacktiebombers

Anonymous (January 20, 2004)

Below post was about French Toast, not black eyes... but FUCK!

Anonymous (January 20, 2004)

Saw them with the Black Eyes (Q and Not U were headlining and they were great but FUCK! That's always going to be the "Black Eyes show" to me.) Never heard of them before. The two of them were in matching khaki outfits like they were boyscouts. Looked downright retarted, but their music managed to win me over

i-type-poorly (January 20, 2004)

oh and just an obervation. The album cover has this "Evil Dead" Necronomicon thing goin on. Ok, thats all...

i-type-poorly (January 20, 2004)

they're touring with Ted Leo, so might as well check em' out...

Anonymous (January 20, 2004)

does anyone know why q and not u are called q and not u?

Anonymous (January 20, 2004)

i keep seeing this and wanting to get it and then i don't. maybe i will next time.

yellowtrash (January 20, 2004)

...would involuntarily garner heaps of hype.

Luckily, the DC guys like to keep things quiet and probably will like to receive less expectancies this way.

kirbypuckett (January 20, 2004)

Why Don't "Plus Signs" show up?

" "

Hmm...

- Kirby

kirbypuckett (January 20, 2004)

How can you beat a band named 'French Toast?'

Must eat now, then N , then C .

- Kirby

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