Tastemakers are split over these Long Beach, California-based psych-rockers and their debut long-play, Tentacles. Some reviewers and bloggers insist that the album picks up precisely where the band's self-released, untitled EP (2008) left off — namely, in a state of feverish musical ass-kicking. Others suggest that the speedier Tentacles backtracks a smidge — that it's the work of a talented noise-prog-punk sextet that hasn't quite learned to synthesize and studio-ize the expansive magic of its live shows. However, on one particular issue, all parties concur: In the wake of Crystal Castles, the Crystal Method, Crystal Gayle, et al., Crystal Antlers is a crap handle for a band. "Oh, shit . . . I might have to listen to a band with 'crystal' in its name," one unnamed poster lamented after reading a favorable online review of Tentacles. "Gonna be hard to come to terms with that." Hmm, maybe. Remember, some of us had to suffer the "Jesus" band-name craze of the early '90s, which meant finding a way to give The Jesus Lizard a fair shake during the heyday of Jesus Jones. Now that was like walking on water.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene each week with music news, trends, artist interviews and concert listings. We'll also send you special ticket offers and music deals.