Buzzkil - Driven By Loss

Clark Summers 07/11/2005

Rating: 3/5

Makar are from New York, hate their jobs (opening track, I Hate My Job) and take their name from an old Scottish word meaning poet. 99 Cent Dreams is a self-released album featuring 18 tracks and they've sent a disc of live videos as well.

They sound like New York. Not the recent New York, the Strokes and all that, but the older New York, the one that belonged to the Velvet Underground and the arty-types in The Village. This record is full of breadline-living bohemia and wanting to be Andy Warhol.

The tunes are a mix of the Velvets and US college rock like Ben Fold's Five. Plain, simple poetry set to decent melodies based around acoustic guitars with extras like pianos and whatever comes to hand laid over the top. There's nothing startling but you get you pay for.

Apart from one standout track, which only appears on the video disc. I Can't Tell You To Stay is a simple song sung beautifully by Andrea DeAngelis - a haunting tune that rises above the rest of their stuff. She sings it in falsetto, the words lost in the tune but the feeling staying put. The film is grainy and badly-lit, the band playing in front of a floor-to-ceiling curtain in front of what seems to be a nearly empty bar. Don't know how you could get your hands on it, but it'd be worth hearing.