On their self-titled debut, A Place to Bury Strangers offer an especially unruly take on the proto-shoegaze of the Jesus and Mary Chain. Place doesn't stray far from the template, but it's loud and abrasive enough to convince you that if the Reid brothers didn't prefigure the rise of industrial, they at least assumed it to be a logical progression. With his phalanx of guitar pedals, Oliver Ackermann distorts his songs to the point of obliteration, leaving a haze of reverberating feedback and breathy vocals in their wake. Approachability, it seems, is not a chief concern, and yet melody does lurk somewhere beneath the ominous clamor—the elastic riffing on "Breathe" and the Cure-like baseline on "Ocean" providing the most direct evidence. Ultimately, these fleeting moments make Place far more palatable than other albums of its ilk. One can only hope that the band is in an equally compromising mood when playing live. With headliners Holy Fuck!
Mon., Feb. 18, 9 p.m., 2008