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Most people haven't heard of the Portland, Oregon-based duo Quasi -- made up of divorced couple Janet Weiss (also the super-powerful drummer of girl trio Sleater-Kinney) and Sam Coomes, who many might've seen as an Elliott Smith sideman -- but that doesn't mean the couple haven't had their brushes with fame. In fact, they seem a little obsessed with industry sleazeballs and spoiled rock stars on The Sword of God, their fifth full-length release and their first for Touch and Go. One track, "Little Lord Fontleroy," could be an answer song to Elliott Smith's "Son of Sam" (just a guess!), and another is the not-so-subtly titled "Fuck Hollywood." Musically, Quasi are a stellar drums-keys-and-guitar rock-music force that churn out catchy riffs in their sleep (even if the ones here sound a tad like earlier Quasi songs), and Coomes's lyrics tend to be stingingly funny, if occasionally cynical. Luckily, Weiss's whimsical lead vocals on a couple of tracks, such as "Nothing, Nowhere," sweeten up the bitter taste. Fans will also want to check out the simultaneously released Early Recordings, a rather grungy collection that makes you realize how damn good these guys have gotten over the years.
|Label:||Touch & Go Records|