And here’s another one, courtesy of Dave at Eye Weekly…
JOEL PLASKETT EMERGENCY ****
Joel Plaskett’s fifth solo disc is a concept album with a simple premise: two teenagers form a band, then break it up in a fight over a girl. You won’t read blog think pieces about Ashtray Rock; you don’t even have to follow the plot to appreciate the strides Plaskett has made as a songwriter Ã¢â‚¬â€œ instead of songs that sound like they were written by a student of anthemic ’70s rock, he finally started writing anthems. There’s residual cleverness in the two-fisted rock of Ã¢â‚¬Å“Drunk TeenagersÃ¢â‚¬Â? or Ã¢â‚¬Å“Fashionable PeopleÃ¢â‚¬Â? but there’s no winking in the darker numbers, with their betrayal (Ã¢â‚¬Å“Nothing More to SayÃ¢â‚¬Â?) and desperate observations on how breaking up is harder to do in winter (Ã¢â‚¬Å“Face of the EarthÃ¢â‚¬Â?). Plaskett’s lyrics aren’t fashionably oblique enough to inspire the hype afforded to our other buzz bands; too often, we conflate epic style with achievement. Ashtray Rock doesn’t trumpet its greatness, but it’s great nonetheless.