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TonyDoug's CD Reviews: Human Hands, Remake Remodel

by tonydoug wright

Human Hands, Emily Watson EP (Secret Heart Records, 2004)

THE BAND: Dennis Duck (Drums), Juan Gomez (Guitar), Marc Salata (Bass), Pierre Smith (Guitar) and Jeff White (Vocals).

THE HISTORY: Human Hands, a Southern California punk band, was founded in 1978 and included Dennis Duck, Juan Gomez, Bill Noland, Rick Potts and David Wiley. The band was able to release a few recordings prior to their breakup in 1981. Some of the original band members went on to join acts such as Wall of Voodoo and The Dream Syndicate. Human Hands 15 year breakup ended in 1996 when the band reformed with Rob Zabrecky of Possum Dixon on lead vocals. A few personnel changes led to a new lineup of Dennis Duck, Juan Gomez, Marc Salata, Pierre Smith and Jeff White.

THE REVIEW: In case you were wondering, the Human Hands' Emily Watson EP is named after the actress who has starred in films such as The Boxer and Red Dragon. 'Emily Watson', the incredibly catchy opening track, is somewhat reminiscent of The Go-Betweens 'Lee Remick'. It is hard not to sing along with vocalist Jeff White when he kicks into the chorus of "You're OK, Emily Watson". 'Steam', the second track on the EP, is a fantastic toe-tapping song that combines Pavement lyrics with a Schoolhouse Rock beat. Human Hands then turns on the punk switch for 'My Beautiful Song', a track that takes the route of The Descendents to discuss typical relationship problems. Finally, the Emily Watson EP ends with 'Shimmer' a standout track that ends the EP on a high note.


Remake Remodel, 12345 Accelerate EP (Pop Boomerang Records, 2003)

THE BAND: Melissa Lock (Bass), Alex Kastaniotis (Drums), Jes Cogger (Vocals) and Sarah Blaby (Guitar and Vocals).

THE HISTORY: This Melbourne four-piece, originally known as Porcelain, has rocked Australia, Canada and the US. The 12345 Accelerate EP was released in 2003 and sold well in their native home of Australia. Alex Kastaniotis left the band and was replaced by Liz Turner.

THE REVIEW: Remake Remodel took the pop sound of The Go-Go's and mixed it with some old fashioned super-charged power-pop to create the über cool 12345 Accelerate EP. The ladies from Melbourne kick off their EP with '12345 Accelerate', a song with plenty of distortion and attitude that would make Kim Deal and Debbie Harry proud. Two tracks, 'Thanx 4 Nothing' and 'Jellybean', round out the rest of the EP.


Issue 27, October 2004

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