Music » Critics' Picks

The Living End

8 p.m. Friday, December 1. The Gargoyle on the campus of Washington University (Forsyth and Skinker boulevards).

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Aussie punks The Living End — who first took the land Down Under by storm with their 1998 single "Prisoner of Society" — are once again trying to hook the youth of America with their fourth disc, State of Emergency. Bratty choruses and most of the Living End's previous rockabilly speed have been sifted from the album, replaced by more mature rock & roll kickbacks to singer/guitarist Chris Cheney's early influences, like Chuck Berry. But well-structured and melodic songs such as "Wake Up" prove the band members are aware of the need to move beyond their once-juvenile sound — and are capable of doing so without losing their roots. With American bands so often pigeonholed into genres, perhaps the Living End's experimentation with a new sound proves the smallest continent does have more to offer than just AC/DC.

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