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Five Eight

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Album Review

Athens-based trio Five Eight have been around, sporadically, since 1989, but their self-released and self-titled sixth album has the spunk of a new band's debut. It's easy to imagine singer/songwriter Mike Mantione, a diagnosed manic depressive, sitting through yet another album of nothing-new mewling from yet another sad lil' emo band and thinking "You wanna see emotional torment? Watch THIS!" before writing the fairly horrific "Criminal," a presumably fictional tale of living with guilt after causing a friend's death through drunk driving. After that cathartic opening salvo, however, Five Eight dial back a bit on Mantione's usual angst to create a somewhat more hopeful set of tunes that traffic more in wry ruefulness and clear-eyed self-appraisal than outright anger and whining. Even better, the trio's clean, precise arrangements avoid the sludge trap that ensnares so many similar bands, and they're clearly able to handle tempos above the traditional snail's pace. If this was Five Eight's first album — and it seems that Mantione intends it to be a fresh start — then it would be the sort of debut that makes listeners look forward to what's coming next.

Customer Reviews

Best Five Eight album to date

Five Eight has been playing in Athens and the eastern half of the US since 1990 and have put out a number of great records. This latest self-titled album however is far and away their best and that's saying something. Five Eight gives new meaning to the phrase "angst rock" and while this CD is more "slickly" produced than their others, the raw emotion still shines through and pulls you in. I'm Still Around was the first single released and received plenty of airtime from Atlanta radio stations. The guitar riffs and solos in Magnetic Fields are fantastic and will make you want to find a mosh pit. Solid album all the way around and a good introduction to a great underrated band. Look for the CD Gasolina after picking up this CD. You'll have to visit their website to do so. The Good Nurse which is also sold on iTunes is not typical of their music - it was an experiment I would venture to guess - definitely listen to it before purchasing. Everything else you can get your hands on however is worth every penny.

Five Eight

I was originally going to write that this is a good but not great Five Eight album and that I am old-school Five Eight and remember seeing them live many times in the early 90s and nothing they have done in recent years compares to the old stuff like I Learned Shut Up (especially) and Weirdo (there was another one in there somewhere I think, but neither of these are available here at iTunes yet). Anyway, that was what I was going to write. Then I listened to this album again. I am glad to say it has grown on me. I'm still not going to say it is their best (again, Shut Up), but if you're looking for a good Five Eight album on iTunes, this is it. Even better, find out where their next gig is and catch them live. Their shows have always been unbelievable and will do nothing but give you good memories when listening to their music later.

quite possibly the best!

this band has unfortunately been overlooked for years. time to jump on the five eight bandwagon and buy their records. this one is phenomenal as is their other ones. find i learned shut up to start your journey.


Formed: Athens, GA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Athens, GA emo unit Five Eight was the vehicle of singer/guitarist Mike Mantione, a self-professed manic depressive whose music exorcised his personal demons in grim detail. Debuting in 1989 with the self-released Passive-Aggressive cassette, the band -- which also comprised longtime bassist Dan Horowitz, guitarist Sean Dunn and drummer Patrick '"Tigger'" Ferguson -- resurfaced two years later with Inflatable Sense of Self. Signing to the Sky label, in 1992 Five Eight issued their first full-length...
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