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Nothing Is Real

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iTunes Review

L.A.’s Crystal Antlers approach their music with the intensity of Hüsker Dü—and had that Minneapolis trio had the resources back in the mid-'80s, it likely would’ve made an album as sonically revealing as Nothing Is Real. Crystal Antlers have scaled back to a trio of singer/bassist Jonny Bell, drummer Kevin Stuart, and guitarist Andrew King. They manage a sound just as intense (with someone handling keyboards where necessary) but with a sound mix that’s more than simply loud guitars making up for low budgets. Yet after the opening Hüsker-like maelstrom of “Pray,” Bell and Co. tip their hats to one of Minneapolis’ other great ‘80s bands, The Replacements, with the Paul Westerberg–like “Rattlesnake” and the existential “We All Gotta Die,” where elements of the mellow side of Sonic Youth and Superchunk poke through the mix. After the aggressive attack of “Persephone” and ”Anywhere but Here” comes the gentle psychedelic ballad “Don’t Think of the Stone,” where Crystal Antlers prove they’re dreamers as well as hands-on rockers.

Customer Reviews

More great work

Nice album, can't wait to see them in DC at the end of the month.


Formed: 2006 in Long Beach, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Long Beach, California's Crystal Antlers began turning heads in 2008 with their recording debut, EP, a release that was produced by Ikie Owens (known for his work with the Mars Volta) and noted for its blend of psychedelic, garage, and prog rock sounds. Jonny Bell (bass, vocals, woodwinds), Andrew King (guitar, organ), Victor Rodriguez (organ), Kevin Stuart (drums), and Damian Edwards (percussion) soon developed a reputation for eccentric live shows and earned comparisons to Comets on Fire and Les...
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