Mitraille Mitraille LP

Debut LP from this Belgian act who’ve been at it for about five years now, with a handful of EPs under their belt. My internet sleuthing didn’t turn up too much about the band, but everything I did come across wanted to inform me in some flippant manner that these guys play garage punk. And they do. It’s just not nearly as tossed-off and cool as their Bandcamp copy would have you believe. Actually, this is some pretty slick-sounding shit—you can tell some real work went into both the production and the songwriting here. These guys wanted these tracks to sound good. The problem is they just sound fine. They’re clearly aspiring to some big, catchy sound (or like the underground garage punk equivalent), but the songwriting isn’t quite up to the task and something about the execution sounds insincere. A rougher production might have helped hide these shortcomings, but the approach taken here really lays them bare. It ends up sounding  like a facsimile of the BLACK LIPS at their most anodyne, or an antiseptic band like PARQUET COURTS covering the URANIUM CLUB. It’s not the worst thing I’ve ever heard, just exceedingly OK.