Radical Empathy

Alpha Hopper Aloha Hopper LP

A little too quirky to be hardcore, too heavy to be rock, and probably post-a-lot-of-things, this record might not be groundbreaking, but it’s pretty hard to pin down. Snotty, screamed vocals that sound straight out of the early ’90s sit nicely in the mix with AmRep-style noise rock. It’s busy enough to be interesting, but not so busy that it isn’t catchy.

Slow Mutants Slow Mutants LP

Another album from a group that already broke up, unfortunately. This upstate NY power trio performs deftly-arranged indie rock that at any given moment could bring to mind elements of the BREEDERS, PJ HARVEY, SLEATER-KINNEY, or SAVAGES. Crisp, to-the-point songs with minimal fuss and absolutely no fucking about, and a vocalist with personality. The three members boast a curriculum vitae of accomplished former bands, so it’s no surprise that they know what they’re doing. Add to the equation that this album was recorded by one J. Robbins and the case is closed. Too bad they are no longer around.