Various - Hours and Hours: A Tribute to Seaweed (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review


Hours and Hours: A Tribute to Seaweed (2008)


Seaweed's emotional, grungy punk rock laid the foundation for numerous punk and post-hardcore acts that would follow over the next decade and a half, whether they knew it or not. Their tribute here, Hours and Hours doesn't chronicle many of those said bands who seemed to follow in Seaweed's footsteps (though the "sentiments" portion of the liner notes proves they were influenced by them in some way), but it does collect a number of acts who pay some honors to the band; inconsistencies might plague the album, but overall the positive seems to outweigh the negative.

Kover's Ryan Mills serves up the opener in the completely appropriate "Start With"; musically, Mills really nails the song dead on, even if his chorus sounds even bigger than Seaweed ever really did. Four Star Alarm's high-pitched vocals might take you getting some used to in "Squint," but the song is crunchy and matches up well. Elemae does a nice job with "Magic Mountainman," a slow-churning release that's gritty and a bit distorted. Whoever the Porter is (apparently, members of Thursday, All Broken and the Gaslight Anthem), they give "Common Mistake" some nice aggression and energy, though those proggy riffs sort of come out of nowhere (maybe those were in the original too?). The Fire Still Burns sound like they were made to cover Seaweed with the old-man gruff of "Crush Us All."

Some of the bands pretty much go their own route, and with mixed results. The Company We Keep, which is essentially the solo project of Brian Southall (who's previously spent time in the Receiving End of Sirens, Boys Night Out and Foredirelifesake), tackles "Steadfast Shrine" along with Moneen's Kenny Bridges; its heavy electronic flourishes and slower pace basically make it sound like a TREOS song -- that's not a bad thing though, and Bridges' sincere voice layered over Southall's makes it quite interesting. However, Nora and Killwhitneydead applying their heavier touches just doesn't fit "Clean Slate" and "Baggage," respectively; Killwhitneydead stocking their contribution with their usual over-the-top amount of movie clips doesn't help, though in all fairness the dialogue does match the mood of the lyrics. All right, I guess it's really the overly gravelly and inverted vocals that kill it just a bit. Meanwhile, Look What I Did just sound too goofy for my liking on "One Out of Four."

Stephen Brodsky (Cave In, 5 million other projects) does "Chalk the Cracks" acoustic (was the original acoustic? I honestly don't know, but somehow I doubt it) with more of a Kurt Cobain snarl than you can even imagine.

There's a portion of songs in the late goings that are sort of just unfortunate white noise. Aside from the charged backup shouts in the Story Changes' "Antilyrical," there really isn't much worthwhile going on from tracks 13-15. The last two songs, Kane Hodder's "Stagger" is naturally weird (have you listened to their original recordings? Then you get me) and Boysetsfire's Rob Avery does "Losing Skin," which is all right but the distorted vocals and iffy recording close the record on a merely 'okay' note.

So, yes. Seaweed's 17-song tribute is hampered by inconsistencies and questionable methods, but overall, there's a few songs on here that really nail what they were all about.

Ryan Mills - Start With
Steve Brodsky - Chalk the Cracks
Elemae - Magic Mountainman
The Porter - Common Mistake