Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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The Rakes

  • Retreat [Dim Mak, 2005] Choice Cuts
  • Capture/Release [V2, 2006] A-

Consumer Guide Reviews:

Retreat [Dim Mak, 2005]
"Something Clicked and I Fell Off the Edge" Choice Cuts

Capture/Release [V2, 2006]
They're more Wire fans than Wire imitators--looser and louder, comfortable with their middle-class roots in a time when identifying middle class is just a fancier way to point out that you're oppressed. Nevertheless, a fuller sound can be a problem for a band that sounds something like Wire. Suddenly dynamic tension alone won't do--you start aiming for rock, for songs, for anthems like "22 Grand Job," more universal than the immortal "I Am the Fly" itself. Unless you're way too big for dynamic tension, you won't nail all that many. But you may get close, like on the U.S.-only "All Too Human." And for sure you'll be dynamic. "T Bone"! "Terror!"! One after the other! A-