Archers of Loaf, 'Icky Mettle' (Merge)

8
Icky Mettle
Critical Mass
Release Date: August 2, 2011
Label: Merge

by Mike Powell

In retrospect, 1993's Icky Mettle -- an album of boyish fits and noisy guitar flurries -- plays like the end of an era. It's indie rock as hearty and art-free as oatmeal, before the line separating it from the mainstream dissolved, before it became so...eclectic. This remastered edition includes a few singles and ...Vs. the Greatest of All Time, a post-Mettle EP anchored by shout-alongs indicting a scene the band half-helped to create: "Strike up the band, turn off the random," sings Eric Bachmann. "Calling out to the A&R, A&R."

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