I really liked the 1996 self-titled release from 764-HERO. At the time they were a two piece, and that first album was quite minimal -- just guitars, drums, and heartfelt vocals. It reminded me of The Pixies in the sheer intesity crammed into the songs. Well, i guess it also helps that at times singer John Atkins pulls off a good impersonation of Doolittle-era Black Francis.
But now 764-HERO is a now a power trio, adding bass to the mix. This small change was, i feel, a mistake. Their sound is now more filled in, and gone is the beautiful minimalism. You see, that's what i liked about the first album -- it was simple music that had so much emotion in it. Now that the songs are more complicated and sound more normal, i don't get the same emotional "kick" out of them.
So now 764-HERO sound like all of the other indie rock bands coming out of the Pacific Northwest. They aren't quite so unique anymore.
Still, there are a couple of good tunes on the album. The title track Weekends of Sound, has a really nice little guitar riff. Also of note is Left Hanging, which is a happy, silly mess of a song that sounds underproduced and yet has great drumming.
Otherwise, the album just seems to blend into that general sort of "indie rock haze" of all of the many bands in that style that i listen to. A shame really, because for that one album 764-HERO really stood out.