Record Review - 1 July 14 2005

The members of Jet By Day proclaim themselves to be purveyors of "heavy-indie-Southern rock" and indeed, they deliver something like that. It's heavy.

With a good variety of pace and solid playing, The Vulture is a standard-fare indie release with a decent range of songs. The band breaks up its metal-inspired, drum-driven rock with some surprisingly pretty synth and a willingness to slow down, often oddly reminiscent of early Cure. Each song is reasonably distinct and the record is well ordered, ranging from expansive moments of artful soundscape to solid tracks of loud-loud-loud. The drumming is pretty good, and the vocals don't suck. Unfortunately, the lyrics do.

And wow, these guys really take themselves seriously - as evidenced by website photos of the band holding lit candlesticks and gazing pensively at their shoes, and by really heavy-handed lyrics. "You're gunna hear me roar. One more injection to kill the pain. Two more pills just to slow my brain," cries the track "I Want to Hold Your Handgun."

And if the pace of the record is interesting and varied, the lyrics are just the opposite - absolutely consistent in their immaturity, and full of the requisite whiskey bottles, pills, dying, screaming, bleeding, pain and angst.

At the end of the day, the record is fine, and if you like your indie rock with an even balance of metal power chords and emo vocals, The Vulture is right up your alley. But do yourself a favor and throw out the liner notes. You're "gunna" be glad you did.

Jet By Day plays Smith's Olde Bar Thurs., July 21. 8 p.m. $7. 1578 Piedmont Ave. 404-875-1522. www.smithsoldebar.com.??