Saturday, June 15, 2013

The Mono Men "Sin & Tonic" 1994

The Mono Men "Sin & Tonic" 1994: Wrecker captured the Mono Men at their hard-driving best, and 1994's Sin and Tonic proved that they were still the heaviest-hitting band in the roots-punk genre they helped to create. But Sin and Tonic doesn't quite match the earlier album's impact; Sin and Tonic is shorter, doesn't boast quite as many standout tracks, and the production sounds a bit less beefy that what Conrad Uno had summoned for them before. Then again, that's what happens when you play the two albums back to back; listen to Sin and Tonic all by its lonesome, and you'll find John Mortensen and Dave Crider wailing up a storm on guitars and vocals, and Ledge Morrisette and Aaron Roeder having no trouble keeping up on bass and drums. And if the songwriting isn't quite as inspired as on Wrecker, it's still thoroughly solid, and the band proves they don't need to resort to covers to make their mix of vintage raunch and modern-day blast signify. If Sin and Tonic isn't the Mono Men's best album, it's still good enough to satisfy anyone who digs their blend of garage snarl and punk fury, and wipes the floor with most of the bands who followed in their path. - by Mark Deming

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