Seattle's little-known and largely unheralded Police Teeth continues to write, record, and perform some of the best indie rock around, despite the lack of financial gain, notoriety, or justice. Few are in its league. Hell, few are playing the same game. Awesomer Than the Devil brings the damage just as hard as 2008's Real Size Monster Series, a cult hit among those in the know. This is the sound of smart, cynical guys playing vital music that smokes the competition.
Should-be No. 1 hits like "Summertime Bruise" and "Rock and Roll is a Pyramid Scheme (Parts 1 & 2)" cross paths with moody and insistent pieces such as "Public Defender" and"Watching the Hydroplanes" (originally by the band TunnelVision). A slap in the face of Pitchfork Media-style posing, Awesomer includes scathing indictments of the "cash in, debt out" nature of the banking class and songs that advocate burning your diploma for heat. To the initiated, the catchy, working-class rock of Police Teeth demands comparisons to Les Savy Fav at the top of its game, or The Thermals when they truly lock it in, or Archers of Loaf. True to its title, the album is not only worth a blind buy, it's a necessity. (Latest Flame Records)