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Aw Shucks too…

And here’s another one, courtesy of Dave at Eye Weekly…

On Disc
JOEL PLASKETT EMERGENCY ****

Ashtray Rock
MapleMusic

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 – 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 “Drunk Teenagersâ€Â? or “Fashionable Peopleâ€Â? but there’s no winking in the darker numbers, with their betrayal (“Nothing More to Sayâ€Â?) and desperate observations on how breaking up is harder to do in winter (“Face of the Earthâ€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.

DAVE MORRIS