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DINK (Buy CDs by this artist)
Dink EP (Dink) 1993
Dink (Capitol) 1994

While Dink would no doubt like to be seen as slightly more aggro heirs to the experimental mantle of such Buckeye antecedents as Pere Ubu and Devo, the Ohio quintet actually has more in common with prehistoric Kent homeboys the James Gang, since its output is basic bar-band boogie retooled for the industrial age. Several years spent trawling in Midwestern clubs built Dink enough of a reputation to propel its self-released EP to regional hit status, which the group — with a good word on their behalf from Trent Reznor — swiftly parlayed into a major-label deal. The self-titled album reprises several of the EP's better tracks, including the swirling, synth-heavy "Green Mind," but, for the bulk of the eleven-song set, guitarists Sean Carlin and Jer Herring simply run basic hard rock riffs through enough effects to give them a fleeting illusion of modernity. Still, Dink has its moments: "Water" overlays an espresso-soaked canvas of bongos and bass with singer Rob Lightbody's beatnik jive, while "Get on It" gives up the funk in unexpectedly convincing fashion.

[David Sprague]