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Della Street - EP

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Album Review

Prisonshake's 1991 four-song EP, Della Street, is one of the few recordings from the original Prisonshake lineup that is still currently in print. The original group released a profusion of singles, but no full-length until 1993's The Roaring Third, when the only original members remaining were vocalist Doug Enkler and guitarist Robert Griffin. The EP is not quite as intense as The Roaring Third, but the songs are just as strong, and the nonstop intensity is surprisingly displaced by strong melodies and tunefulness. "Carnival Game" boasts a strong vocal line courtesy of singer Doug Enkler, with its accompanying music being near-R.E.M. pop. "From Down Here" combines desolate, roaming guitar and bass phrases with yearning vocals, while "Molly" has a slight reggae feel at times. "London/Stuck In St. Louis, 1985" is an adventurous, lengthy number, and although it's not as daring as, say, Jane's Addiction or Shudder To Think, it still moves the listener with its mood shifts. It's a shame that the original lineup of Prisonshake didn't stick around for a few more albums. Fans of finely crafted, unpredictable alterna-pop should definitely check out Prisonshake's Della Street.


Formed: 1987 in Cleveland, OH

Genre: Alternative

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

Prisonshake's approach to rock can be loosely compared to Fugazi. Like Fugazi, the most important thing is the music, and they could not care less about record sales, videos, radio, or glamour. But unlike Fugazi, Prisonshake's record output has been limited to just a couple of full-length albums, plus a slew of singles and appearances on compilations, and they don't play live regularly. Admirably, they're writing music for their own enjoyment, and if other people like it as well, that's fine...and...
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Della Street - EP, Prisonshake
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