Blasts from the past in the form of modern sounds - it's hard to make it sound new and important when it sounds like something you are already familiar with. But HOWLER add something to their brand of early '90s indie; a darkness, a tension. Pretend there's a promo sticker on the $17.99 vinyl slab at Sam Goody, and pretend it reads: For fans of LIZ PHAIR, PJ HARVEY, TEENAGE FANCLUB, BREEDERS, EUGENIUS and summers off from college. Would you buy that record? Maybe I wouldn't make the blind purchase based on some manipulative advertising, but I would surely be intrigued - and now that HOWLER is on my radar I don't imagine they will be slipping out of view any time soon.