Everyone knows how difficult of a task it is to stand out in a music scene. To distinguish yourself from your contemporaries often includes genuine innovation and a certain degree of naivety. The Washdown, with their debut album, Yes To Everything, unfortunately fall into that dreary category of generic. With their broken mic howls and up-tempo guitar squeals, they find themselves knee deep in the barrage of revivalists and garage dwellers that have swamped the music industry over the past two years. Blame it on bad timing, lack of creativity, or tight jeans; any way you slice it, the scene is over-saturated. Unable to muster up a captivating aspect to their appeal, this Tampa quintet fails to deliver any substance in composition or content.
But where the Washdown suffer in originality, they triumph in energy and zest. Though these songs may blend together into one 34-minute cacophony of yelps and frantic riffing, in a live environment, they're sure to excite and cause some rambunctious, epileptic-like dance moves from the audience. The rabid basslines that thud their way through the album will have flat-assed hipsters flexin' their rhythmic aspirations full force. "Pull. Out. Work. Space." and "Say When" especially highlight this low-end glory.
The fact that the Washdown can loosen up a crowd and have them dancing isn't enough, though. As a listener, something more satisfying is necessary to keep me coming back for more. Variation in tempo and overall approach are in dire need here. The similarities between each song are endless, even though the Washdown's plan of action may have been to make a relentless dance-punk record. Yes To Everything just becomes exhaustive by the midway point. The Washdown are missing that one unique characteristic that brands a band with a distinctive sound. Perhaps through their future endeavors, they can discover what that quality will be.
1. Kansas City
2. Right Foot
3. Bad Connection w/ A Lover
4. We've Listened to Your History
6. Pull. Out. Work. Space.
7. Ladies and Gentlemen
8. Say When
9. Awful Truth
10. Learning Makes You Handsome
11. Killing Word