Friday, April 23, 2010

Hospital Garden - Hospital Garden

AvE has been dormant too long. Leave it to this loud Chicago-by-way-of-Dayton trio to wake us up. Remember Hospital Garden? The post-Bear Mountain Picnic solo demo project of Lucas Hollow? Well those sketches are now a full fledged reality and Hospital Garden are three rather than one.

Hospital Garden is a team. An angry, righteous squad of rock n' roll with roots of influence extending down deep into the 1980s when their ears were very young, but not unreceptive. They are blistering guitar, bass and drums led by Lucas Hollow's feverish lyrical mumble, always seeming on the verge of exploding -  the tried and true power trio, in lock-step, on a mission to blow up power chords in such effective time-tested methods that it all sounds new again.

They are a streak of pop core wrapped in the unassuming dirty frustration of an era when Reagan anguish had yielded to resigned Reagan fatigue, and something we all should have seen coming around again having just said goodbye to Bush II. Lucas, Sarah & Ian are re-exemplifying the rebellious good that was at the heart of what became labelled "alternative" before all of that rose to the braindead, cashcow top of college radio and Teen Spirit.

But Hospital Garden are not a historical reenactment of the alternative scene. They are diligent students of what has come before, but with a new vision for resistance - resisting the temptation to disintegrate into weirdness, incoherence and fake frame glasses like all your favorite Pitchforkers. Resisting the temptation to be boring and lame. These kids wear real glasses. Use real guitars. A true alternative to that which presently dominates our attention strapped ears and eyeballs.

If Guided By Voices and the Lemonheads were pop music prophets, then Hospital Garden is the new voice in the wilderness and their self titled work is the call to repentance from all your hip nonchalance in 2010. Purchase it at CD Baby or wait for it to show up on iTunes, Amazon, etc. in the coming weeks.