Reviews

When We Break

Author: Ken
01/25/2006 | Earfood.net | www.earfood.net | Live Show Preview
Most of my friends that have gone to law school actually ended up liking lawschool, especially after the first year. I almost went myself, and can't honestly say that it still might not happen? Never know what tommorow holds and all that. Point is that apparently getting into lawschool sucks as does the first year, but for most not all of my friends the second and third year were alright. I mean its got to be better than getting a real job. The problem is that when you finish lawschool, summer internships full of diners and lots of wine and scotch you have to sit for this thing called the bar. It apparently really sucks, and is as stressful as an AIDs test (if youv'e been misbehaving). Then after the bar, if you are lucky enough to have turned one of those internships into a job, not only do you have a real job- you have a REAL job. Complete with 65-70 hour weeks at big firms, and your life is no longer your own, kinda like Tom Cruise in The Firm best I can tell. Lucky or unlucky for me I have always been a music man, and am putting off the real world with masters degree as unlikely to land me a job as my history degree from undergrad.

Well this brings us right into Criteria who will has been killing it out on their tour behind their latest release on Saddle Creek "When We Break". Lead singer Stephen Pedersen went to Duke Law, played in The White Octave, toured, took some classes, graduated, came back to Omaha (where he had served as guitarist for the first two Cursive records), and began making a record in his basment. He then enisted A.J. Mogis (yep that one), Mike Sweeney from Beep Bepp, and guitarist Aaron Druery and Criteria was a band.

Criterai has some similiar qualities to Cursive, but really nails the big rock stuff the best. A bit of his other old band The White Octave still shows up, as does the influence of Jawbox. The more I lsten to it, I can't help but feeling that this band has the tunes to cross over to a hit (ala Jimy Eat World), and maybe that is coming. Tunes like "Prevent The World" and "Run Together" will stick with you all day at your real job. Who needs a stinking law degree when you write songs this good. Tag these guys with that stinking emo tag ( I still don't get whats wrong with that), call them post-hardcore cause (yea they're that too), throw in math rock and hardcore as influences as well. It all comes out in the wash, but the laundry is done and the Criteria clothes fit well (meaning off course that the songs are good). Dropping out of corporate law is not a great idea for everyone with a guitar and an idea, make sure people like your music, before you break your mother's heart. All they ever wanted for you was the best, which off course means a good job and bills up to your neck.

Stephen should be a hero to all those sitting in an office or cubicle today, and his songs should be your anthems. So for today try to get away with doing as little as possible, hell leave sick and go see a movie after you stop at the record store for your soundtrack for the day. Top the day off with an afternoon beer, when's the last time you had a beer right in the middle of the afternoon during a week day. Probably when you were in school. Go see Criteria when they stop in your town. and thank the guys for your day of blowing off work. I think I am going to go watch Office Space now.

Their tour stops in my hometown tommorow night at Cave 9 in Birmingham to play with Wild Sweet Orange (yep that Wild Sweet Orange), and Kate Taylor (Maria Taylor's little sister and keyboardist). The show pormises good times for all. The big show starts at 7 sharp, is all ages, and I have know idea how much it is.www.criteriamusic.com
When We Break

When We Break

LP / CD / MP3




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When We Break

When We Break

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Prevent the World Single

Prevent the World Single

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En Garde

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