Rogers Sisters Purely Evil

[Troubleman Unlimited; 2002]

Rating: 3.5/5

Styles: punk rock, post punk, no wave
Others: B-52’s, ESG, The Cure, Talking Heads, Gang of Four

There are at least twenty geographical locations with flourishing music scenes; New York City just happens to be the current leader.  With an ever-growing list of bands, one would almost want to move to the Big Apple just for the music scene. Mostly consisting of post-punk, no wave, and garage rock revival, it’s hard to find someone who doesn’t advocate one of these bands as being the next best thing since soft toilet seats.With time, I believe The Rogers Sisters will find themselves nestled somewhere in the middle of quite a few of these acts. This Brooklyn trio is playing some fierce party music with overflowing spoonfuls of B-52’s, ESG, and Boy’s Don’t Cry-era Cure. Hell, they even do a nice rendition of The Cure’s song, “Object.”

One of the positive things about Purely Evil is that it reminds me of a time when albums were made to get you off your ass and have a good time. The type of fun you so desperately wanted to have when your parents still had full control over your free time. Since many of today’s highly celebrated artists need analysis before they can be enjoyed, The Rogers Sisters are refreshing in the sense that they come off as a band that merely wants you to hang out with them. Possibly on Friday night after school or at the bar they own in Brooklyn called Daddy’s. Their label, Troubleman Unlimited, has become pretty good about evoking this style of retro sound and image over the past several years, thereby allowing many bands to flourish in this type of upbringing. 

With only 28 minutes to pack in 11 songs, Purely Evil gets right to work with “Zero Point.” Heavy guitar distortion and flowing bass riffs permeate the airspace until the vocals enter the room to take full control of the situation. However, once the guitar is given some room to flourish, it’s revealed that there are layers of melody amidst all this aggression. With the exception of only a couple songs, this isn’t just middling punk rock that you’ve heard several hundred times over the course of your life. Take a song like “Song for Freddie,” for example. The lyrics insinuate that this is an ode to the late Freddie Mercury of Queen. The entire trio sings “He wants to ride his bicycle/He wants to ride it all day long/He wants to ride his bicycle/He wants to ride it through this song” numerous times, expressing the lighthearted tone of the album.

“Delayed Reaction,” which also happens to be my favorite, is saturated with flanged guitar effects and chomping lyrical prowess. It’s a song that should make just about anyone happy. It should also be noted that bassist, Miyuka Furtado, lays down some very intricate sounds in addition to doing a large portion of the singing. She could be the next Peter Hook on the track “I Can Tell You How I Feel about You.” Some tracks, including “I Dig a Hole,” don’t seem to contribute too much to the overall outcome of Purely Evil. I wouldn’t go so far as to call it filler, but it’s definitely derivative of most punk rock songs. The good news, however, is that these songs are short enough that one or two less appealing tracks don’t take away from the bulk of the album. Purely Evil is an enjoyable listen, and an album I’ve found myself coming back to quite a bit for certain tracks.

1. Zero Point
2. Money Life
3. Song for Freddie
4. Delayed Reaction
5. Now They Now (xoxo)
6. The Black Anniversary
7. I Dig a Hole
8. (I'm a) Ballenna
9. Calculator
10. I Can Tell You How I Feel About You
11. Purely Evil