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Forward, Russia! Give Me a Wall

Forward, RISD! might be a better name for these Brits, since they unleash a heavy, Les Savy Fav-like groove on their debut. No singer can match the charisma of L.S.V.'s beefy indie-rock provocateur Tim Harrington, but Forward, Russia!'s Tom Woodhead keeps things interesting, occasionally spazzing out but mostly sticking to the Bloc Party school of grandiose vocal stylings. Though the individually numbered (only) tracks can seem indistinguishable, the album is solid. It would be tempting to say that a band with so many well-worn influences works only in theory, but Forward, Russia! shouldn't be written off.

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