Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.


Excellent Italian Greyhound (Touch and Go)

On Shellac's latest release, Excellent Italian Greyhound, the band derides everything from our nation's current political situation ("Elephant") to the very nature of preparedness ("Be Prepared"). In typical Shellac form, however, it's never clear whether Greyhound has a message or the album is just one elaborate joke.

Not much has changed with the trio's intense post-punk instrumentation: Steve Albini's guitar maintains its savage crunch. Todd Trainer's drumming carries meandering tempos and time signatures with booming crispness. And Bob Weston's basslines chug along. That said, the new album sounds more thrown together than previous releases. "Genuine Lullabelle," for example, borders on some of the silliest territory Shellac has covered. Halfway in, instruments drop out and Albini does his best Sinatra impression, crooning, "Everybody party . . . party hard," before going into some out-of-nowhere lines about a woman who "really knows her way around the cock." "The End of Radio" is another anomaly. It's Greyhound's extended opener, and the song features little more than Albini repeatedly screaming, "Can you hear me now?"

Shellac's latest release pushes the limits of what any non-fan would deem listenable. Then again, maybe that's the point.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Speaking of CD Review

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 23, 2020

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

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


Staff Pick Events

  • Open Turntable Tuesday @ The Winchester

    • Tuesdays