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Album Cover VPN - Small Wire (Evil Teen Records)

Referred to by CMJ as "New York's best-kept secret" (and this time, the quote actually means something) VPN is an easy band to become infatuated with. Consisting of Austin Hughes (guitar/vox), his twin sisters Patti Golden (guitar) and Jean Rodd (bass/vocals), as well as non-relative Eddie Gormley on drums, this quartet delivers some of the tightest, most controlled compositions I've heard in a while.

From the bitingly cynical 'Patty Hearst' to the very strange and surreal 'Eleanor (has four arms)', these songs are quiet in exactly the right places, resounding with perfect power chords the next; crescendos build and crash on schedule, without sounding formulaic in the slightest. These guys just _know_ what they're doing at every moment in every song, no doubt about it. They are fucking awesome and you should buy this disc.

by Holly Day.