The sheer fierceness of sound on The Sound of the Union of a Man & a Woman was enough to impress many in the indie music community when it was released in 1999. The raw teen angst of Kurt Beals' vocals serves as fuel to the fire on the Union of a Man & a Woman's 12-track debut on Jagjaguwar Records. Neil Campbell's steady drumming and John Harouff's scorching guitar dance around Beals' manic vocal exercises. The waves of blistering and experimental angular rhythms on "Battered Children Twirling Battered Batons" intertwine with stop-and-go lyrics. Harouff's spastic guitar work on the instrumental "Cut to Fit the Mouth" only serves to heighten the musical tension. The chaotic, youthful energy on "Are Your Shoes Fit for the New Dance?" is a wonderful example of a new breed of punk rock. Having cut their teeth on Fugazi and Shellac, the intricate and scorching arrangements on the disc's last three tracks bring the album's energetic momentum to an exhausting plateau. Most of the album was recorded live at WGNS Studios with Geoff Turner. Short wave radio experiments and vocals were later added.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Cramer