Dead Stars

High Gain

Uninhabitable Mansions

Street: 06.04

Dead Stars = The Jesus And Mary Chain + Pablo Honey-era Radiohead 

I’m convinced that rock and roll still has room for innovation, but this isn’t the release to prove it. Garage-rock, a little indie, even a little fuzzy, High Gain is a perfectly decent EP that plays it safe in every way. It’s not bad, it’s not great, it’s just there and it doesn’t hurt your ears. After a few listens, I’ve slowly become fond of “Staring At The Sun” and “No Sympathy,” the album’s closers, and I’ve found that “No Sympathy” in particular has the perfect chill-out vibe for late-night car rides with the windows rolled down. This is one of those middling releases that won’t do much to make you love it or hate it. I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody looking for something new, but it’s a safe bet for a little dose of alt-rock/grunge/whatever nostalgia. –Matt Brunk