Alkaline Trio Remains

Being a band that never rest, these Chicago natives will often book a studio and record additional material while in the midst of touring between their official releases, meaning that this odds and ends record is filled with 19 songs that have been recorded in such a fashion. Some of these tracks have been on compilations, EPs, B-sides or international releases, and three additional tracks were recorded live at the Avalon in Los Angeles in 2006, as well there is a bonus DVD full of videos and "behind the scenes” footage. For fans, this is completely necessary, as it rounds out Alkaline Trio’s progression in sound over the years and fills in any additional gaps. Normally these types of releases are just fillers to buy time while a band records or overcomes artistic block for an upcoming album. This is not the case with Remains; these songs are equally as good as any full-length material and follow the favoured topics of death, poison, depression and heartache fuelling a bloody gaze at a former love. For those of you who haven’t yet managed to hear Alkaline Trio, don’t be afraid. Even with their potentially depressing lyrics, the band have the ability to deliver their words in a way that’s full of scornful merriment and playfulness. It’s a sick little combination that works like a charm. (Vagrant)