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Alkaline Trio - Agony and Irony

  by Adrian Huggins

published: 7 / 7 / 2008

Alkaline Trio - Agony and Irony
Label: V2
Format: CD


Superbly ambitious sixth album from hardcore veterans the Alkaline Trio, which while remaining lyrically very dark, finds them experimenting with a more upbeat sound

Returning with their first full length studio album since 2005’s ‘Crimson’, Chicago’s the Alkaline Trio sound like a band that have big ambitions. The Alkaline Trio have constantly made great albums all laced with dark undertones and set against some of the finest pop punk in the business. With ‘Agony and Irony’ they finally sound like they could really take on the big boys such as Green Day and lay waste to all the half arsed rip offs that have been and gone since the Alkaline Trio first arrived on the scene in the late 90’s. The opening tune ‘Calling All Skeletons’ is classic Alkaline Trio. As its title suggests, it finds them delving deeply into their dark hearted world and recounting in their familiar, yet never boring and brooding style another self deprecating tale of personal destruction Then the next track, ‘Help Me’, comes in and really makes you sit up and get excited that they’re back. ‘Help Me’ sounds like a potential single and is littered with pianos and a much more upbeat sound than we’ve ever heard from the band. It sounds like a band that have finally allowed themselves to let some happy sounding moments into their songs. That is only the tune though as this singer Matt Skiba does what he does best and his lyrics remain anything but upbeat and still dark to the core. ‘Over and Over’ and ‘Love Love, Kiss Kiss’ – the latter penned by bassist/singer Dan Adriano clearly at his driest and bitterest - are again lyrically morbid, but also once again more upbeat in sound. Although a re-issue of their 1998 debut album 'Goddammit' and a B-sides/live album ‘Remains’ has filled a gap and kept people interested in the three years out of the studio, it is fantastic to hear them back and so obviously at the very top of their game. With a lot more sing-a-long choruses on here they’ve really managed to stay true to their sound while pushing themselves into new places.

Track Listing:-
1 Calling All Skeletons
2 Help Me
3 In Vein
4 Over And Out
5 I Found Away
6 Do You Wanna Know?
7 Live Young, Die Fast
8 Love Love, Kiss Kiss
9 Lost And Rendered
10 Ruin It
11 Into The Night
12 Burned In This House
13 Maybe I'll Catch Fire (Acoustic)
14 Live Young, Die Fast (Acoustic)
15 Into The Night (Acoustic)
16 Over And Out (Acoustic)
17 Lost And Rendered (Acoustic)

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live reviews

ABC, Glasgow, 24/5/2010
Alkaline Trio - ABC, Glasgow, 24/5/2010
At the ABC in Glasgow, Tony Gaughan watches a monotonous and late starting set from Chicago-based punk/grunger heroes the Alkaline Trio out on the road to showcase their new album, 'This Addiction'

favourite album

Goddamnit (2008)
Alkaline Trio - Goddamnit
In our 'Re: View' series, in which our writers look back at albums from the past, Adrian Huggins assesses Chicago punks the Alkaline Trio's 1998 debut album, 'Goddamnit !', which has just been re-released in a remixed and remastered version

digital downloads


Remains (2007)
Excellent B sides and rarities collection from much acclaimed hardcore rockers the Alkaline Trio
Mercy Me (2005)

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