The Comfortable Chair

Prizefight

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Having been forced to abandon their originally chosen name of Prizefight due to its prior usage by other bands, San Diego's newly baptized Comfortable for You proceeded to slap it on to their first album instead. And apt it is, too, since the ambitious quartet clearly have their sights set on winning the post-hardcore/pre-emo throne left vacant by hometown heroes Drive Like Jehu nearly a decade earlier. As such, fiery opening tandem "Happy Fun Ball" and "Loud/Audible" give it all they got for a violent two rounds before giving way to a couple of studious rounds represented by more considered and dynamically eclectic offerings such as "Sally Field" and "The Other Side of Sweden." Round five, "Verse 24," adds a bit of white noise and distortion to a ongoing back-and-forth duel between the above two strategies, and the surprisingly gentle "It's Me, Casper" builds nicely in intensity to set up the return to aggression delivered by the curiously named "Ebin Timed His Arrival Poorly." And, closing what has quickly proved to be a very diverse LP ("challenging bout," for those of you still thinking of this record in boxing terms) comes "Targeting Computer"'s interesting melodic/atonal flirtations, "The Rise and Fall of Jericho Rosales"' syncopated pop-punk flurry, and the big, anthemic emo closer "Sing at the End." From start to finish, these tracks make for an impressive debut, slightly over-reaching in ambition, but already showing admirable and abundant promise of things to come.

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