Antwerp has never been famous for its music, and A Brand's second disc, Hammerhead, won't help raise the Belgian city's profile. It's not a bad start, though, and if more bands are as bold and eclectic as A Brand, then Antwerp could become the new Glasgow. This five-piece tackles a variety of genres -- 70s arena rock, 90s dance and even Strokesish indie -- to surprisingly pleasing effect. However, despite their ability to genre-mash, this disc won't break through to the masses. A Brand are a little too serious about their club beats, and there are a few alt-rock moments that may or may not be ironic. If A Brand keep the hooks, leave out the pretension and stay a little more focused, then Antwerp might have a chance.
A Brand rock Crowbar Friday (June 9), as part of NXNE.