Album Review: Saxon Shore “It Doesn’t Matter”

April 29, 2009

seriously? i hope this didn't take more than 8 seconds in photoshop

seriously? i hope this didn't take more than 8 seconds in photoshop

“Our Band Could Be Your Life”

Finer words have rarely come out about the relationship of band to audience. The Minutemen, as 80’s indie rock pioneers, layed ground work for many of the bands we listen to today in the 2000’s.  Really though that quote can also be used to perfectly describe the myriad of problem’s with Saxon Shores new release “It Doesn’t Matter” (which is surprisingly how i felt after listening to it). You wake up, go to work, come home, eat and go to bed correct? Songs start soft, meander through boring synth and guitar work, slowly start to build, release the build up and then end. This band is your life and not in the way Mike Watt intended. 

Its sad really but this type of music is filled with so many bands and the answer to why is because its an easy style to ape and sound decent.  I’m not saying Saxon Shore are phoning it in on this one its just original ideas certainly aren’t their strong suit.  Which many would say is not the point of a band like Saxon Shore it’s more about the emotion and powerful build up’s.  In previous releases i would have to agree with this camp but today not so. 

In no way am i saying that im not a fan of this group.  In fact I’ve been with them since the begining even through the mediocre at best “Luck Will Not Save Us From A Jackpot of Nothing.”  As time went on though they lost a lot of there rock edge and have situated themselves in some kind of quasi easy listening electronic rock. 

Dave Fridmann as producer certainly brings a lot cred to the table with this one but fault can not be placed on him.  It’s a nice sounding record that does work with the atmosphere of the compositions but ultimatly it comes down to poor songwriting.  Instruments do what they should.  Nothing stands out over one another and where previous releases have seen great emphasis on bombastic drumming, Stephen Roessner sounds simply castrasted here.  In fact on “The Exquisite Death of Saxon Shore” he is front and center prooving himself a powerful new member single handedly raising the album to better places.  Leading me to believe outside sources were at work on his drumming as he is surely capable of better.

The last and final nail in the coffin are the two bonus tracks included.  WHY DO WE NEED TWO OLD SAXON SHORE SONGS RERECORDED?! Amber, Ember, Glow and Secret Fire Binding Light (from “Four Months of Darkness”) are great songs but really only highlight the fact that these songs are worlds better than anything on this. Maybe im just crazy but i dont have time to give this another listen.


RATING: two pieces of bread with lettuce out of a possible two pieces of bread lettuce, tomatoes, onions, mayo, turkey and cheese.


an older video, but a video all the same


2 Responses to “Album Review: Saxon Shore “It Doesn’t Matter””

  1. anon Says:


    They are Japanese Only bonus tracks. Obviously you downloaded this record illegally.

    • shaunpeden Says:

      I fully realize that these are japanese bonus tracks, that doesn’t change the fact that they were included in a release. Next time i will make clear in my posting what release it is, so yes error on my part. As far as my downloading of the album, of course i did. I have since purchased said album and deleted my illegal copy which is what i typically do upon reviewing an album. i appreciate your comments and thanks for reading.

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