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These Arms Are Snakes - Easter (Cover Artwork)

These Arms Are Snakes

These Arms Are Snakes: EasterEaster (2006)
Jade Tree Records

Reviewer Rating: 4.5
User Rating:


Contributed by: elliotelliot
(others by this writer | submit your own)

It's always great to see people step out of the shadows of their former bands. These Arms Are Snakes bassist Brian Cook spent years playing in mathcore pioneers Botch, but after the initial rush of people judging his new band by the standards of his old band, the time has come for those comparisons .
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It's always great to see people step out of the shadows of their former bands. These Arms Are Snakes bassist Brian Cook spent years playing in mathcore pioneers Botch, but after the initial rush of people judging his new band by the standards of his old band, the time has come for those comparisons to be squashed for good. Not even operating in a similar vein as Botch, their objective is to create something original and new. Didn't bands forget how to do that years ago?

Of course, These Arms Are Snakes owe debts to noise rock bands that have come before them, such as Drive Like Jehu, but what they really excel at is taking those influences and melding them into a sound that is truly exciting. No song on Easter is a better example of their confidence than the opener, "Mescaline Eyes." Like a suave ladies' man on the prowl, the song swaggers into your brain with some downright viciously danceable riffing, keeping the energy up for nearly five minutes. A big strength that These Arms Are Snakes have is their ability to have disco-influenced beats without sounding like a Gang of Four rip-off, as so many bands do today. They have enough sensibility to know that if you're going to put rhythms like that in your songs, you need to offer the listener an extra bonus on top of it. And they do that in spades. Guitarist Ryan Frederiksen assaults the listener with lots of hammer-on riffs that are always so perfectly crafted to fit what Brian Cook is putting down under him. Occasionally switching to a distorted organ only adds to their variety, as they never go over the top with it.

Also stepping out of his own shadow from Kill Sadie, Steve Snere has upped his worth in These Arms Are Snakes by turning in his best performance yet. For a vocalist that doesn't play an instrument, Snere plays the biggest role he possibly can. He seems to have a highly educated understanding of how to put vocals to the sometimes challenging songs that his band writes. Only sporadically does he do a full-on scream, and when he does, it's electric. His favored style is switching from a blistering yell in the intense parts to a drunken but determined snarl in the subdued parts. This works really well, especially when it's delivering the best lyrics Snere has written so far, providing another unique aspect of their package.

These Arms Are Snakes deserve to be one of the biggest bands in the world. Despite their tendencies to push the noise element of their sound to the extreme, their songs remain relentlessly catchy and always memorable. Easter is by far the best recording they've done, both sonically and musically. It's going to be hard for them to ever top this, but with how much they've grown since their first EP, they might just surprise us all again.

 

 
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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.
elliot (November 2, 2006)

it means you guys are afraid of sex!

Anonymous (November 2, 2006)

Riding the Grape Dragon is a slap to the chin alright. The snakes'best song Subtle Body is on Easter.

Barkley

Kursk (November 2, 2006)

I haven't heard all of this but what I have heard I really like.

My favorite song by TAAS is still "Riding the Grape Dragon" though

eyeslikebombs (November 1, 2006)

What does this actually mean?

I don't know, but I'm incredibly creeped out.

Anonymous (November 1, 2006)

Like a suave ladies' man on the prowl, the song swaggers into your brain with some downright viciously danceable riffing, keeping the energy up for nearly five minutes.

What does this actually mean?

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

Scott's arms are fat !

elliot (October 31, 2006)

i think they do sound like jehu in certain parts, and that they also do jesus lizard-y parts. sorry i didn't mention both bands.

and they definitely throw in dancy beats a lot. maybe not as much as the rapture, but it's there.

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

I saw this band open for thrice and despite that fact that i had never heard anything by them, they were by far the most entertaining live band i've seen.

Steve has incredible stage presence.

score is for album

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

I really hate to say this, but I don't know where half of the comparissons in this review come from.

If you're gonna mention a noise-rock band that influenced TAAS, then you mention The Jesus Lizard. I like Jehu just as much as the next, but I don't see the connection. Disco? I don't hear anything like it on this thing. Definitely techno/electronic elements, but not disco (and yes, I know techno came from disco, but at this point that's like saying FalloutBoy is a descendent of blues).

Strong album, and it's much more cohesive than the first one. Great live band too.

ihatejones (October 31, 2006)

This album's so much more boring than their last, which didn't have as good a sound as their first EP

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

I miss Harkonen. Anyone else?

recordtheory (October 31, 2006)

I love this album. Jade Tree '06 baby!

pwfanatic (October 31, 2006)

i love this album but i wouldn't say its relentless catchy. i think their other material was much catchier than this, but with that said, this shit blows their old shit out of the water live. then again...anything these guys do live blows all shit out of the water.

insinceredave (October 31, 2006)

Good review. The record does flow a lot a better than their last effort.

Archangel (October 31, 2006)

Push it like a push pin, push it till it gets in!

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

totally agree about the first album. first 6 songs were killer, last ones were kinda lame.

SilentStorms (October 31, 2006)

I agree with the last Kenjamin's comments, but remember the Harkonen split ... oh my god best TAAS ever. Looking forward to hearing this!

kenjamin (October 31, 2006)

bummer.

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

kenjamin,

you'll probably feel the same way

kenjamin (October 31, 2006)

My complaint with the last record was that the first few songs were awesome and memorable but the record dragged on forever and I could never finish it. How does this one hold up?

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

This dick's a snake.

Anonymous (October 31, 2006)

these arms are gay

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!

BrendanKelly (October 31, 2006)

good, but hard to get into.
still working on it.

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