Reviews SansJoseCover-horizontal

Published on October 26th, 2012 | by Ballard Lesemann

0

CD Review: Sans Jose

Sans Jose
Go For Launch (independent)

What a puzzle: the latest disc from Sans Jose

What a puzzle: the latest disc from Sans Jose

Slick recordings with carefully overdubbed tracks, intricate production tricks, and high-tech equalization and mastering have their place in the music world, but it’s exhilarating to hear a noisy rock band in the raw on a lo-fi recording once in a while. Sometimes a no-frills, warts-and-all approach is best for certain groups, especially on garage/punk side of things.

Charleston combo Sans Jose’s five-song debut Go for Launch eschews studio fanciness entirely. The homemade recording sounds like it was tracked in a huge trash can. But it must have been a handsome trash can with a enough room to let the guitars and cymbals ring and the bass drum booms. Drummer Chaz Straney, bassist Scott Dence, organist Stefan Rogenmoser (a Metronome contributor), and guitarists Will Cox and Jim Faust simply congregated one evening, plugged in, hit the record button, and rocked out. Judging by the fuzz and distortion across the tracks, the recording levels must have gone into the red during the loudest measures.

The title Go for Launch harkens back to the band’s previous name, Go for Launch. If someone were to compile another Nuggets collection, any of the tracks on Go for Launch would fit right in.

The mini-album starts off with the mid-tempo “Shoot Shoot,” a jangly, four-chord romper with an early Kinks-meets-Sonics feel. Bassist Scott Dence sings each verse slightly off-key with a cool sneer. The chug-chuggin’ “Cold Front” moves faster with a bit more post-punk intensity (think early Mission of Burma and Pere Ubu). Guitarist Will Cox sounds almost totally exasperated as he fusses and sings on “But I Want You To,” which is probably the nastiest and most aggressive track of the bunch.

With a surfy, Batman theme-esque guitar hook, the listener can easily start dancing the Batusi to the go-go teenbeat of “Red Giant,” a rambunctious number with shouty singing from guitarist Jim Faust. Rogenmoser’s cheerful organ chords and accents contrast the relentless clang coming from his bandmates. “We Should’ve Known” closes the EP with an impressive arrangement that crams a lot of melodic transitions, melodies, and tricky chord changes into a minute and a half. It sounds like the main love song of the set, only with a spooky monster movie guitar hook in the intro and outro.

Sans Jose, 2012

Sans Jose, 2012

Sonically and instrumentally, Go for Launch features amusing amateurishness from song to song, but Sans Jose isn’t simply bashing the same three chords and drum beats along the way. Within the clang and bang of this rapid-fire rock record are moments of clever songcraft and pure energy, and it all comes together well. It roars with a trashy resoluteness that makes you want to crank it.

Sans Jose perform as “The Sonics” at the Tin Roof‘s “Halloween Cover Show” on Sun. Oct. 28 at 9 p.m.

Visit reverbnation.com/sansjose for more.

Below: a clip from a recent Sans Jose performance during Stereofly‘s showcase at the Pour House.

Comments

comments

Powered by Facebook Comments

Tags: , , , , ,


About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.



Comments are closed.

Back to Top ↑

  • Gigs of the Week

    Apr
    19
    Sun
    7:00 pm Gov’t Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Gov’t Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Apr 19 @ 7:00 pm – 11:00 pm
    Gov't Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Georgia-based powerhouse Gov’t Mule — led by singer/guitarist Warren Haynes and drummer Matt Abts — swing back through the Lowcountry for a two-night stint behind a new six-disc collection called Georgia Bootleg Box (Evil Teen), the first installment of[...]
    Apr
    20
    Mon
    7:00 pm Gov’t Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Gov’t Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Apr 20 @ 7:00 pm – 11:00 pm
    Gov't Mule @ Charleston Music Hall
    Georgia-based powerhouse Gov’t Mule — led by singer/guitarist Warren Haynes and drummer Matt Abts — swing back through the Lowcountry for a two-night stint behind a new six-disc collection called Georgia Bootleg Box (Evil Teen), the first installment of[...]
    Apr
    21
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Apr 21 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Apr
    23
    Thu
    6:30 pm Diana Krall @ North Charleston Performing Arts Center
    Diana Krall @ North Charleston Performing Arts Center
    Apr 23 @ 6:30 pm – 10:00 pm
    Diana Krall @ North Charleston Performing Arts Center
    Award-winning jazz pianist and world renowned vocalist Diana Krall ushers her “Wallflower World Tour” to the Lowcountry.
    Apr
    28
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Apr 28 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    May
    5
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    May 5 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    May
    9
    Sat
    9:00 pm Drivin’ N Cryin’ @ The Windjammer
    Drivin’ N Cryin’ @ The Windjammer
    May 9 @ 9:00 pm
    Drivin' N Cryin' @ The Windjammer
    Atlanta-based rock band Drivin’ N Cryin’ return to the IOP behind a series of EP releases on their own New! label. Singer/guitarist Kevn Kinney, bassist Tim Nielsen, drummer Dave Johnson, and guitarist Aaron Lee Tasjan tracked some of the[...]
    May
    12
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    May 12 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    May
    19
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    May 19 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    May
    26
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    May 26 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jun
    2
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jun 2 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jun
    9
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jun 9 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jun
    16
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jun 16 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jun
    23
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jun 23 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jun
    30
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jun 30 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jul
    7
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jul 7 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jul
    14
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jul 14 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jul
    21
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jul 21 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Jul
    28
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Jul 28 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Aug
    4
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Aug 4 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Aug
    11
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Aug 11 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]
    Aug
    18
    Tue
    6:00 pm The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Aug 18 @ 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    The Bushels @ Edmund's Oast
    Local string quartet the Bushels perform a weekly residency at the award-winning downtown brewpub Edmund’s Oast (1081 Morrison Dr.) every Tuesday evening this spring and summer. Guitarist Jim Algar, mandolinist Mal Jones, banjo player, Guilds Hollowell, and bassist[...]

    View Calendar

  • Videos