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Without a Sound

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iTunes Review

It’s arguable that Without a Sound is more of a solo venture by singer/guitarist J Mascis than a full-fledged Dinosaur Jr. album; the absence of Patrick “Murph” Murphy’s jazz-inflected drumming is felt here. On its own merits, though, Without a Sound does provide the sort of manic-depressive thrills that Dinosaur Jr. fans have come to savor. Few artists can strike a pose of anguished detatchment as skillfully as Mascis as he proves once again on the faux-festive “Yeah, Right” and the rueful “Feel the Pain.” His familiar Neil Young fixations and the affinity for tempo-shifting arrangements are present as well, though the mood here is often downbeat. “Grab It” and “I Don’t Think So” shake off the lethargy with some bracing energy surges (counterbalanced, as usual, by Mascis’ laid-back delivery). The yearning “Seemed Like the Thing to Do” offers an interlude of folksy contemplation. Without a Sound doesn’t match the sublime mania of Bug or Green Mind but there are enough oddball delights here to make it worth the listen.

Customer Reviews

My thoughts exactly!

Dinosaur Jr. is a local band (Amherst, MA) but 10+ years ago when I was 13, wore plaid flannel and thought I was Angela Chase, I had no idea that the music that was changing my life began just up the street from me. Thank you, thank you... a thousand times thank you.

flap jack report

its got some good flap but not quite enough jack

One of the greats

Talk about nostalgic for the early '90s! Yeah, I thought it was brilliant then and I listen to it again and have even more of an appreciation of J. Mascis' of the great guitartists of his era and an absolute master of melody, harmony, and arrangement. You don't hear music like this today. His vocal style is a great contrast to the rough-edged sound. Buy it and listen to it at least 10 times all the way through before passing judgment; not for the teen-pop-minded.....


Formed: 1983 in Amherst, MA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Dinosaur Jr. were largely responsible for returning lead guitar to indie rock and, along with their peers the Pixies, they injected late-'80s alternative rock with monumental levels of pure guitar noise. As the group's career progressed, it turned into a vehicle for J Mascis' songwriting and playing, which had the ultimate result of turning Dinosaur's albums into largely similar affairs. Over time, Mascis shed his hardcore punk roots and revealed himself to be a disciple of Neil Young, crafting simple...
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