by Betsy Ellison
I don't know about you, but sometimes I'm a bit hesitant to listen to bands that have put out their CDs themselves. Sure, it's snobby and I'm undoubtedly missing out on good music, but it reminds me of all of those really bad bands from high school. You know the ones I'm talking about-- the bands with three guys who had no idea how to play their instruments or write songs, but formed a band anyway, and instead of getting better at their art, recorded a CD right away. So when I got Branta's CD, I was a bit hesitant to listen to it. It's a good thing I had to review it, because it's a very good album. Branta is a three piece band from Seattle that have a bit of a Talking Heads quality, at least in the vocals. The musicianship is superb and the songs are astoundingly catchy and even cause my foot to tap, which I rarely do. There doesn't seem to be a weak point in this album, which is rare. It's interesting that there are a lot of bands on record labels--not just major labels, but the indies, too--that aren't half as good as Branta, and Branta aren't signed to any record label. This album makes me wish that I still lived in Seattle, so I could check out their live show.