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April 2004 Pick of the Month

Artist: Bleach
Label: Tooth and Nail
Length: 11/76:53

Bleach has always been an interesting band to me, in that they seem to spent their careers trying to distance themselves from the Audio Adrenaline/DC Talk type sound. Astronomy is not as much of a rocker as previous efforts such as Static, but neither has the band abandoned their traditional Weezer meets Foo Fighters tone.

“Get Up” is a radio friendly power pop number that should appeal to youth groups across the country.  “December” and “Living” most resemble the Foo Fighters and “new punk” bands like Jimmy Eat World or Good Charlotte.  The album is dedicated to Captain Josh Byers, a brother of one of the band members who was lost in Iraq. The sadness of that event is evident throughout the disc, noticeably in “Plan to Pull Through” and “Living.”

Astronomy may be Bleach’s swan song, if reports are to be believed.  While I think the vocals are better on this disc than others, I prefer the rockier, guitar-driven songs on Static and Again, For the First Time to Astronomy. Still, there is a lot here that works well for fans of college rock.

Brian A. Smith 3/7/2004


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