Smith Westerns, 'Smith Westerns' (Fat Possum)

Smith Westerns
Critical Mass
Release Date: August 31, 2010
Label: Fat Possum

by Charles Aaron

This waifish Chicago foursome's lo-fi garage-glam debut literally sounds like a band steaming up your basement -- tinny, muffled, exuberant, with songs so undeniable (nasally punk entreaty "Dreams"; stormy ballad "Be My Girl") that even the crabbiest dad would amble downstairs to kibitz. Smith Westerns obviously looks back to T. Rex, David Bowie, and the Nuggets comp, but like kindred spirits Girls and Black Lips, the band is so immersed in wide-eyed pure discovery that even their most derivative throwaways ("Bang a Gong" cop "Girl in Love") feel like childhood epiphanies.

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