Artist: Frank Black & the Catholics
Label: What Are Records
Released: Jan 30, 2001

The latest album by Mr. Black and his group of Catholics. Let me be honest, Frank has dissapointed me for a while. His first 2 solo albums were ok, but after that it really went down hill. Let's be blunt, he has been sucking for a while. However, in March I went to see him in concert at a small local venue. Despite having all their equipment stolen 2 nights before, they managed to put on one hell of a show. They did a 4 hour set with no break and even treated us with a whopping 6 Pixies songs. Let's just say it renewed my faith and interest in Frank a bit.

Recently a track from this album (Bullet) has been getting a fair bit of airplay on the local independant station and again I found my curiousity peaked. I liked it. A lot. So of course, I had to have the album. Well, let me summarize: it kicks ass. It is not the pixies, but it doesn't try not to be either (a problem which plauged some of his earlier albums). Basically the whole album is just a solid rock album with Frank's goofy lyrics and diverse song structure. Most of it is fairly slow and rootsy, with a fair mix of slow soft songs and moderately tempoed screaming numbers.

This album also marks the return of former pixies keyboardist and producer Eric Drew Feldman and former pixies guitarist Joey Santiago. With all the people adding to the mix, the sound tends to be very layered, but in a simplistic way, if that makes any sense. There is also a lot of steel guitar here, which somehow just fits into the slow and rootsy mood of the album. Overall I am very thrilled with this album, while not groundbreaking, it is very listenable and has plenty of classic Black lyrics and riffs to keep things interesting. Let's just say it hasn't left my cd player for 3 days. My pic for best tracks: St. Francis Dam Disaster, Stupid Me, Bullet, and The Swimmer.


  1. Blast Off
  2. I've Seen Your Picture
  3. St. Francis Dam Disaster
  4. Robert Onion
  5. Stupid Me
  6. Bullet
  7. The Swimmer
  8. Hermaphroditos
  9. I'll Be Blue
  10. Llano del Rio
  11. If It Takes All Night
  12. Dog in the Sand