“Hey kids, you’ll never get it back,” Adam Moerder snark-sings in the title track that kicks off this six-song set. Later, he’s screaming that same line over frenetic jabs of guitar while Matt Morello’s bass does its creepy Jesus Lizard crawl from measure to measure and Nick Sylvester’s drums try to keep the whole mess in check. This punkish trio is a wet dream for rock writers, not only because two-thirds of its members were music critics, but also because its main reference point – the heavier side of ’90s indie – is held by many of those same writers on an untouchable critical pedestal.
Fatherland doesn’t stray far from that template, but you know what they say about things that ain’t broke. From the excellently titled “Believing and Shitting,” which sounds like a recently unearthed Pixies rarity, to the acoustic-led “Slow Learner,” which is the closest thing Mr. Dream has to a ballad, Fatherland satisfies. Lest the acoustic make you think they’ve gone soft, though, let’s return to that bratty, incendiary title song: “Hey! Don’t take my edge away,” Moerder screeches, as if throwing a fit is the answer. This time, it’s enough.