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Egomania (Love Songs)

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Album Review

Atmospheric, earthy sounds are what Cobra Verde specialize in, and they deliver the goods yet again on Egomania (Love Songs). It's a compilation of new songs, unreleased material, and tracks that have been previously unavailable on CD (from 45s released on the Sub Pop, Scat, Wabana, and Get Hip labels from 1995-96). The band shows off its many moods on this potpourri of contagious, rough-and-ready rock. The best track has to be "For My Woman," where singer John Petkovic growls like a caged animal (with a razor-sharp bluesy edge), as a tough guitar riff fights him for the spotlight. "Chinese Radiation" momentarily serves as a calm retreat, until the group kicks into highgear MC5-style, and "Still Breaking Down" features guest vocalist Robert Pollard (of Guided By Voices, whom Cobra Verde have now joined forces with) harmonizing on its melodic chorus. It wouldn't be a Cobra Verde album without at least one in-your-face, violent thrasher, and "A Story I Can Sell" certainly does the trick. All of the songs share a common theme — love. Good love, bad love, torturous love, and homicidal love.

Biography

Formed: 1992 in Cleveland, OH

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Although many first became aware of Cleveland's Cobra Verde when they joined forces with Robert Pollard in Guided by Voices, they're certainly not just any ordinary backing band. They rose from the ashes of the out-of-control Death of Samantha, which released three full-length albums and one EP on the Homestead label. The new group wanted to achieve a more atmospheric sound than its predecessor, and did so by the time of their 1994 debut on Scat Records, Viva La Muerte. Combining the impact of punk...
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Egomania (Love Songs), Cobra Verde
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