Red Knife Lottery - So Much Drama (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Red Knife Lottery

So Much Drama (2005)


Milwaukee's Red Knife Lottery has basically come out of left field to deliver So Much Drama, a splendid art-punk piece of work bursting forth with creativity and nods to recent masters of the vaguely-labeled style. The band succeeds in their spin-art-like style of mixing genres, splattering the paint and figuring the centrical spins'll result in an aesthetically pleasing, bright canvas of strong dexterity; if that's at all true, their imaginations have succeeded their intentions, then.

Though lead vocalist Ashley Chapman definitely bears similarities to the Yeah Yeah Yeah's Karen O., RKL manages to come off like a cross between the aggressive indie rock of Pretty Girls Make Graves and the bizzarre intensity of the Blood Brothers. Chapman has a nice range, employing a sinister, caterwaul scream and singing voice that may result in several accusations of sass, but what's backing her up is just as talented -- the band's frenetic use of power chords is undeniably spazzy, but they scatter these throughout with stunningly diverse and creative guitar-work. "The Magnificent Ghost," which starts off with a mid-tempo, waltzy keyboard intro, shows off this craft well, and is clogged with plenty of effects pedal manipulation, but never to the point of an overdose. The band has a tendency to mix epic riffing in as well with more steadfastly-executed triads too though, which is heard easily in tracks like "Call-Girls In Pink Hospitals" -- which makes smart use of more distorted guitars -- and closer "Love To The Sound Emergency." "Samantha Brown Get Down! Get Down!" even busts out of the gates with an up-tempo, garage rock-like fervor. To talk about the other highlights of the disc would consume your entire day, basically.

So Much Drama is a definitively consistent EP showcasing the talents and creativity of virtual unknowns, but based on the quailty of their apparent debut here, it won't be for long.

So Much Drama

The Magnificent Ghost