Tilly and the Wall

05/24/2006 12:00 AM |

Tilly and the Wall were Conor Oberst’s first signees on his Team Love record label back in 2004, which makes perfect sense upon hearing that their lead singer, Derek Pressnall, sounds more like Oberst than Oberst’s own little brother. Considering his more off-putting emo tendencies, ol’ Bright Eyes could have easily picked out a much more annoying band than this one. That said, I’d still rather just listen to an actual mariachi band than a bunch of Omaha kids pretending to be one. Their tap-dance-as-percussion approach actually works pretty well for their live shows (having three cute hipster girls in the band doesn’t hurt either), but on their albums it really just stunts the rhythms of all the songs. Bottoms of Barrels has its moments — namely, the pretty ballad ‘Lost Girls’ and the folksy ‘Brave Day’— but the whole jumpy vibe wears thin pretty quickly. These guys probably throw the best kind of parties (the kind with tambourines everywhere), but the celebration never quite comes across on a stereo.