Tiltwheel The High Hate Us

A full decade after we imagined them broken up and moved on, melodic shoegazing punk rockers Tiltwheel get their act together for sophomore album The High Hate Us. The moment is clearly cause for celebration, given the band's ability to mine the same territory as cohorts Dillinger Four, Leatherface and the rest of those feasting upon whispery vocal harmonies and a distilled Hot Water Music undercurrent. At that, little has thankfully changed on these 11 tracks. Modestly snide, incredibly spiritual and sentimental, the band's twangy overtones push songs along with just enough bounce to feel inspiring, but not overly poppy. Still, they manage to infuse subtle amounts of looseness into the recording's entirety, giving The High Hate Us a live atmosphere reminiscent of early punk, akin to the Monks and Teacher's Pet. It's a well-rounded approach anyone missing the grit of early Jawbreaker should readily pick up, feeding that need for something new, but not entirely different from a band we'd almost forgotten. (A.D.D.)