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2000s: A Musical Retrospective in Real Time: The Ladies

April 26, 2010


I love me some Rob Crow. I also love me some Zach Hill. Thus, it should follow that I love me some Ladies, the Crow-Hill collab that released the album They Mean Us in 2006. A strange pairing at first listen that quickly grows on you whether you only like one member or both. There are elements of Crow’s pop inclinations and sludgy guitar work as well as Hill’s trademark rapid fire drumming. The result is somewhere between post-hardcore and math rock with melodic tendencies.
I feel as though had I discovered this album back when it came out I would have liked it more than I do now. Not that I don’t like it now but perhaps my appreciation for it stems more from my curiosity about what these two excellent musicians could create together than just simple musical enjoyment. There are some great moments on the album but they’re sandwiched between drawn out jams, a definite Zach Hill influence. While it would probably sound a lot better in a live context, through my headphones it seems bumbling at the worst of times. Granted, all this could be an artistic choice on the part of The Ladies but maybe I just expected something more along the lines of prog-pop.
Despite any criticisms I have, the album is pretty solid and it’s always great to listen to some Rob Crow or Zach Hill.

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