Alkaline Trio has had a revolving door for band members since its inception in 1997. Yet somehow the three-piece emo band sounds consistent. With pop-driven music and lyrics depicting the agony and self-deprecation of breaking up and being rejected, the Chicago band has captured the broken hearts of emo kids everywhere. And despite the superficial similarities of location and speaking to disheartened youth, Alkaline Trio doesn't sound like the Smashing Pumpkins. Actually, the trio has matured with its most recent Vagrant Records effort, The Crimson. The band's relationships must have been going smoothly, because this disc doesn't deal with girls ripping out boys' hearts. After a jaunt on the Rock Against Bush tour, and the disappointment of the president's reelection, the band has become more political. Alkaline Trio even penned a song for the West Memphis Three, "Prevent This Tragedy." But while the band's focus may be getting more adult, its live show is still as wild and punk rock as ever.
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