Football, Etc. Prepares To Enter The Draft
Shoegazing and emo music are not really Rocks Off's resident snarky goth's glass of absinthe, but in our opinion, any Houston band chosen to represent our criminally unrepresented city deserves a look. So with some trepidation, we wandered into the realm of Football, Etc. and their new LP The Draft (Catch Your Lucky Stars).
One of the first albums we tackled as a professional music journalist was our own Giant Princess's self-titled debut, and what we most loved about that album was the way they took an extremely raw and rocky recording and turned its unfinished edges into exemplary art. The Draft takes the same approach, with a minimum of production that forces listeners to appreciate it on its own terms.
The guitars jangle and strum, and James Vehslage's drumming follows you like a creepy portrait in a horror movie. What seems to be the band soul concession to standard pop rock is the angelic, plaintive wails and moans of Lindsay Minton.
When she takes up the lyrical cause of isolation and social outcasting, you feel as if you are standing right beside her holding her hand. In a world where no girl in the Top 40 seems willing to stand without a dozen robotic decoys to flank and protect her, Minton's lonely vigil at the microphone comes across quite heroic.
The Draft is amazingly consistent, with few stylistic flourishes outside of Football, Etc.'s main method of attack. Normally, we'd scold them for lack of dynamics, but one must admire the purity of their approach. Like The Ramones, each song seems to be an essential part of the greater whole, despite often being echoes of each other.
Was that "Sudden Death" or "Hail Mary"? Sometimes you get lost without the map of the CD insert, but The Draft is meant to be appreciated as a whole, not as a collections of songs. It is in the end meant to be a cryptic aural exploration of self, not just background noise.
On the road to SXSW, Minton took a few minutes to talk to us about The Draft.