Labeled as "anti-musicians," named after a prayer to Mayan corn gods, and cause for press releases describing it as "set upon by rednecks," ...And You Will Know Us by the Trail of Dead vies for that piece of scarred, post-punk real estate somewhere between the Who and chucking a whirring blender full of bolts straight into a jet engine. With this self-titled debut, the band will probably horrify the realtors. From moments of diversionary electronic tweaks to ones of shambolic, guitar-thrashed screeches (and sometimes both), the album realizes the importance of not trying to be important. The sound of bashing out unconventional "we hate something that we'll make sure to mumble" punk rock without parroting any one musical thing is what -- if anything -- ties these eight songs together. And for good reason. Few bands can sound like such a rightful mess. The band has been lumped in with fellow rock unapologists Queens of the Stone Age and At the Drive-In, but this self-titled debut album is a caustic, fidgety yelp that almost belies its out-and-out intelligence. One of the band's news stories might have said it best: "The band defended themselves with their instruments, which are now destroyed."
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Dean Carlson