The Brainstems are a four-piece rock band from St. Louis and No Place Else is their debut record.
In theory, i shouldn't enjoy this album. The Brainstems make old school garage rock. This music is fuzzy and lo-fi and loud, and i normally don't care for this kind of stuff that much. I mean, it's cool when i hear it as i go through my uncle's records (which i inherited when he died) but listening to "modern" garage rock bands tends to bore me.
But these guys rock. The Brainstems make some insanely catchy music, and listening to this record i get the sense that they are a blast in concert.
There are thirteen songs on the record, and the longest of them is 3:50. So these are short and fast, the band just tearing through things.
Stallioning kicks things off with a Velvet Underground derived style. The music is flat, loud, and fast. The bass riff dominates on Keep It Together as it steamrolls the tune along past disaffected vocals.
The Fourth kind of strums along, the lo-fi distortion almost destroying the voice, which is barely heard under the guitar jangle and the flat drumming. Something in the way he delivers the vocals reminds me of early Fred Schneider. Rock lobster, baby!
4244 has a great groove, the bassist really working it here and the guitar is a thin, fast riff. On the other hand, Untold Heights is a fast "Class of 1977" punk tune, the whole band steaming forward full throttle.
The final tune i really like here is Elevators & Escalators. It features the bass riffing away with a deep groove as the guitars grind to a frenzy. This is "shake your booty" catchy.
So there is much to like here. Don't let the retro lo-fi nature of much of the recording throw you off.