(Surprise Truck Entertainment 2005)Murdocks - Surrenderender

Through distressed, screaming vocals and thrashing instrumentation that buzzes through the speakers, the Murdocks' somehow manage to infuse some catchy melodies into their angst-ridden music. Following up their 2003 self-titled EP, the Murdocks revisit three strong tracks (the soft melody of "Dance The Vomit Shakes," the sinister sounds of "My Scarlet Purpose," and the squeaky Strokes-like "Death Of A French Whore") and introduce eight new songs for their debut full-length, "Surrenderender."

Poppy and mostly clean-cut indie rock abounds on the memorable "Saddest Star" before the 360 degree turn to "Horsegore," where loud guitar thrashes and buzzes with electricity. Quick instrumentation and processed vocals grab your attention on "Bloody Murder." Drummer Ryan Cano pounds his kit with a heavy hand on "Segue," Morris screaming almost indistinguishably through the gritty instrumentation. The focus shifts to vocalist and guitar player Franklin Morris on more stripped down songs such as "Get Your Guns" and "Da Da." Guitar and piano ballads pull things together and tie up loose strings on "Easter Moon" and a hidden track, respectively.

Following up a strong EP with a strong album, Austin's Murdocks know exactly what they are doing. "Surrenderender" is direct, getting straight to the point as they go through the motions. Under all of the Murdocks' squeaky, grungy guitar chords and aggressive rhythm section are melodies that get stuck in your head. With Austin seemingly being the place to go these days for indie rock, you can rest assured that the Murdocks' are certain to bring their attitude.


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