Superchunk, No Pocky For Kitty

J. Edward Keyes

By J. Edward Keyes

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

No Pocky For Kitty

Want to hear indie rock invent itself?

A big, bright, bratty clusterbomb of sound, Superchunk's sophomore effort is a hot white streak that never dissipates and never relents. To listen to it now is to hear indie rock inventing itself: the band brazenly borrows the speed-racing, sludge-laden riffs of the SST era, but uses them to power songs that are ruthlessly melodic, crowned with Mac McCaughan's proudly imperfect yawp. The group is consistently defiant — "You think you see everything with those glasses," taunts McCaughan in "Cast Iron" — and as the record evolves it becomes clear that No Pocky is serving two purposes. It's an appropriation of punk for the bored and overeducated, a shift from simply thinking nothing matters to the anger and helplessness that comes when you realize why. More than that, though, No Pocky is a testament to the power of youth, revved-up and rambunctious — proud of its imperfections, brash enough to exploit them once more, with feeling.