YM asked me to pick three new acts that titilate and charm. I listened to (count Ďem) 50 CDs. Each got two complete spins in the stereo of my 1995 GMC Jimmy while I drove two solid days through the Canadian tundra. After all those hours of so-called music, three albums prevailed, and I realized two things: I donít play guitar as badly as I thought, and you donít necessarily need words to write a song.
Hot pick #1: Fastballís All the Pain Money Can Buy.
I liked this band right off the bat, 'cause they have a really bad picture of themselves on the album. They know trying to look like a sexy Londoner when youíre from Austin, TX, is a bad idea. The songwriting was fresh, melodic, and memorable. Tony Scalzo and Miles Zuniga sing lyrics like, "Iíve been thinking about the good old days, my silly clothes and my silly ways" and make Ďem sound skillful. Fastball offers great guitar sounds, too, not fuzz.
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