Dan Andriano In The Emergency Room / Brendan Kelly & The Wandering Birds – European Vacation
To coincide with their European tour former Slapstick bandmates and Chicago punk rock legends Dan Andriano and Brendan Kelly offer up this split 7” as a tour souvenir. With both musicians side projects a million miles away from each other musically the two songs on this split single are at opposite ends of the punk rock spectrum as the acoustic introspection of Andriano’s ‘The Radiator’ meets the noisy, cowpunk of Brendan Kelly’s ‘Malthusian Clown’ head on.
Out of the two tracks here Dan Andriano’s “The Radiator” is the most satisfying. Stripped down with a plaintive vocal it provides an emotional punch that was missing from Dan Andriano In the Emergency Room’s “Hurricane Season” a record that, while showing Andriano’s songwriting chops, was too pedestrian to leave a lasting mark. Dan Andriano has shown that as the years have gone on in his “day job” he has emerged as the better songwriter. Embracing a long-held love of Elvis Costello and Josh Caterer (Both influences can be heard on this single) his first solo album, however underwhelming, was more of a refreshing listen than Matt Skiba’s various disposable-studio-outtakes-disguised-as-side-projects. Showing maturity and growth, the singer-songwriter side of Dan Andriano is far more palatable than the Dark, gothic Hot Topic punk of the Last few Alkaline Trio records.
Brendan Kelly’s contribution to this split shows another songwriter not chained to his day job. Sure, its gravelly vocals and distorted guitars scream out for Lawrence Arms comparisons but that’s where any similarities end. Blasting through two minutes thirty seconds of cowpunk swagger and incorporating everything from Honky-Tonk piano and a distorted Waits-esque vocal its rewards, much like Brendan Kelly & The Wandering Birds full length album, are found in repeated listens.
With the two lifelong friends undertaking this European tour (that is probably over by the time you read this) with just a guitar, hand luggage and each other for company do them a favour and drop some money down and get this so they can do this tour again one day soon.
You can still pick up this split at Red Scare on their website below or at many of the usual digital outlets.
Follow: @DanielAndriano @BadSandwich @RedScareToby[kkstarratings]