armchair cultural observation since 1995

Destroy Nate Allen – With Our Powers Combined

Like a new issue of your favorite comic book, Portland’s entertaining husband-wife duo Destroy Nate Allen are back with a new appropriately-titled album that speaks to the duo’s combination with backing band Gnarboots to create powerfully fun music.

That I don’t have any music in my indie snob cultured 30-something music collection comparable to Destroy Nate Allen is one of the things that has long drawn me to the Allens and this their seventh full length recording. Their raw, noisy, punk-influenced storytelling brings me back to a time when going to shows and making friends was more important than the sonic quality of a recording or how it held up against the great recordings in rock ‘n roll history.

I don’t go to punk shows, much less concerts too often these days so I appreciate the way Nate and Tessa manage to reach out through their music like a handshake and random banter after a fun concert, something they’ve got quite the knack for, and pierce through my cynical hack music critic nature.

And did I mention they have a great sense of humor? Like when they poke fun at their first apartment in the song “Our First Apartment (Ghetto),” singing “I know the ghetto is where I live, is where I live.” Or the super-catchy “Boobie Bar” when they sing “Don’t go to the boobie bar, if you want a real relationship you won’t go far,” a chorus that required some explanation to my wife when I was singing in the kitchen making dinner recently.¬†Another song guaranteed to have you sing along is the nostalgic “We Talk Occasionally On The Internet,” a song that speaks to those of us who haven’t retreated to our phones for all manner of communication and still like to use the Internet to talk to friends. At least, occasionally.

At less than a half hour, the album is kind on short attention spans and repeated hits on the play button. In the end, the good guys win again.


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