Further listening, however, reveals a wider scope and sharper design on Take Them On. Band leaders Peter Hayes and Robert Turner still have no time for garage-rock purists, but at least all the songs don't follow the same construction. Establishing and perfecting a formula, the band even tries its hand at a ballad of stark delight, "And I'm Aching."
Ultimately, though, these guys are still pissed. But despite the layers of guitars and atmosphere swirling through these 12 tracks, the band's punky angst doesn't have much depth to it. Even if they're rebels with inarticulate causes, they infuse Take Them On with a galvanic spirit. Few contemporary bands better capture rock music's unapologetic emotional determination to live in the fiery present. They'll worry about the future (theirs and ours) when it gets here.