a surprise from a driving trio

Kepone (1/4 Stick)

By Brent Starkey

This three-piece from Richmond, Virginia, led by bassist/vocalist Michael Bishop (ex-GWAR), has put out a whale of an album that would have to be this month's surprise. I expected noodly, art-damage and post-punk _ instead I got driving rhythms, lots of diversity, great vocals, and cool riffs everywhere. At times, not unlike Jesus Lizard . . . or a little like No Means No with a touch of Fugazi - yet never derivative.

Of the fourteen tunes here, only "Clicking Jam," "Slow Build," "Scrub" and "Dead Pop Ideal" fail to deliver - the other ten are monumental. I really liked "Joe," "I Am an Alien," "Ghost" and "Virginia Creeper." Overall, this record is a definite winner and one well worth checking out.