Vote Here and Now for Best of Cleveland 2017®!

Favorite

Ted Leo + the Pharmacists 

Shake the Sheets (Lookout!)

Since disbanding the punk-fueled band Chisel in the late '90s, Ted Leo has emerged as a pub-rock hero, championing everyone from the Specials to Thin Lizzy while also creating his own revved-up version of the real thing. He takes something you might not think you had any particular opinion on -- say, the Squeeze catalog, Stiff Records, Split Enz, and yet more Thin Lizzy -- and throws it all back in your face, reworded and individually stamped and rebirthed.

After last year's Billy Bragg-style EP Tell Balgeary, Balgury Is Dead and his alarming vocal-cord blowout, Leo is back with a full-length that steals more from his days with Chisel: The songs are all marked by muscle and bluster, with only a few moments of expanded palette, like the Celtic-style soul of "Counting Down the Hours." It's not a revelation: Leo is at a place he's been before. But the strong points remain -- check the melody on the opening "Me & Mia" or the section on "Little Dawn" where he sings, "Stretch out your weary hand to mine, it's all right," before he seems to put a finger to his lips and go "Shhh," like it's no big deal. Leo is delivering old-school rock melodrama: All he asks is that you believe him for a little bit.

More by Jon Pruett

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

Staff Pick Events

  • Frank Caliendo @ Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park

    • Fri., Feb. 24
  • Mike Polk Jr. Show Live @ Hilarities Comedy Club

    • Tue., Feb. 28
  • CIM/CWRU Joint Music Program @ Cleveland Museum of Art

    • First Wednesday of every month. Continues through May 3

© 2017 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 241-7550
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation