Lucabrasi | The Norris Division

One gets the feeling that these latter songs were intended to be played in front of a rowdy mosh pit, as is only fitting for a band with their pedigree.

 

St. Louis’ own Lucabrasi released their second album, The Norris Division, on Nov. 20. Fans of local hard rock and its punk/funk hybrids will recognize several of the band members—the lead singer, rhythm section, guitar player and drummer hail from Ulcer, Inc., Adair, the Urge and Helmet, respectively. The album starts off with “All in Grey,” a track evoking Jane’s Addiction and elements of Nirvana. Lead singer Matt McInerney is at his best when he can let loose vocally, and this song allows him to do so.

The second song on the album, "90 M.P.H.," seems designed for radio play, with catchy guitar hooks setting the mood and McInerney’s pleading melody raising the emotional pitch a level. When the band reaches the refrain you are primed for the sing-along moment, and you can’t help but loudly accompany McInerney on: “We’re in this city here, and I just can’t believe.” Fans hoping for a sneak preview can listen to the track on the band’s website, www.lucabrasi.net.

As The Norris Division moves along, a strong Rush influence can be heard, especially on the melodic interplay of guitar and bass. Four or five consecutive songs have this pleasing signature, as the players show off their individual skills. The latter half of the album settles into hard rock in its purest form. While a loud listen in the car does the album justice, one gets the feeling that these latter songs were intended to be played in front of a rowdy mosh pit, as is only fitting for a band with their pedigree. The album wraps up with a return to a mellower form of rock, with McInerney’s lyrics once again taking center stage on “Everybody Would Say.”

The overall effect is pleasing, with enough variety to keep fans of different genres interested and enough musicianship to bring us back for more. I had the pleasure of hearing Lucabrasi open for Fishbone at the City Museum a few months ago, and they are an excellent live band as well. | Stephen Fairbanks

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