ALBUM REVIEW: “Music’s Not for Everyone” by Chain & the Gang

February 22. 2011 | By Sharon Payne

Chain & the Gang
Music’s Not for Everyone
[K Records]

Let’s start with this… I can’t stop listening to this album. It’s fun, raw, clever, and stripped-down. It’s a reminder that radio play isn’t the only reason to make music. That being said, Music’s Not for Everyone, is definitely not for everyone; the vocals are sloppy, the lyrics are sardonic and ridiculous, and the basement-recorded quality of the album does little to showcase the talents of any of the musicians.

The band is fronted by Ian Svevonius, who is somewhat of an icon in the post-D.C. punk, indie-garage funk/punk/soul scene, and includes something like 14 players recruited from other indie bands.

The title track, “Music’s Not for Everyone,” is a psychedelic spoken-word piece, featuring Svevonius rambling for five minutes. He offers a lengthy comparison of the habits of music junkies versus everyone else. It’s hard to tell if this is irony or an example of hipster arrogance. Either way, it’s tired and tries too hard. The final track on the album, “Detroit Music,” is a must-listen with the best of what the group has to offer. “Why Not,” “Bill for the Use of a Body,” and “Can’t Get Away” are guaranteed to make you smile at the very least.

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