Seven Storey Mountain

At The Poles

[3.5/5] D.C. post-punk a la Frodus and Fugazi might drive At The Poles like it was Jeff Gordon, but Phoenix, Arizona’s Seven Storey Mountain ensure to top off the rock and melody fluids themselves quite emphatically-and we hate NASCAR. In compact, three-minute bursts, guitars are gutted, in which riffs coolly ricochet (“Twelve Times”) or relaxingly resonate in warmer, built-up affairs (“The Crux”). Either way, Seven Storey Mountain are entirely capable of an occasional hook or two-despite a constant influx of discordance, as highlighted on the disc by Lance Lammers’ bitter snarl of “I’ve got a question for you, girl” in “So Cursed.” At The Poles is a solid and steady half-hour of riff-rock-infused jauntiness, and while it could’ve been released in either of the last two decades, its take is wholly modern enough. (THICK) Brian Shultz