With Steve Albini at the production helm this time out, 18th Dye took even more of a turn toward a Pixies/Nirvana/Wedding Present-style sound. Such influences had been present before, but now they're clearly brought to the fore, as the soft/loud/soft roar of the opening instrumental, "Glass House Failure," demonstrates. As before, though, the trio are able to avoid doing a simple rehash, resulting in the best work by the group yet. Though not the most original or distinct bunch of musicians, 18th Dye nonetheless succeed at making pleasant and, at times, quite emotional music. While no mean slouches at aggrothrash -- as evidenced by the squalling "Only Burn," armed with a wonderfully quavery guitar solo, and "No Time/11 (Spectators)," featuring a breathtaking opening surge of feedback and sound -- on Bus, the trio's abilities are best showcased by the slower, more delicate numbers, enabling the resigned but captivating vocals of Buttrich to stand out more clearly. "Sole Arch" is an early standout in this vein; when the upfront lounge organ starts, its blend with the band is marvelous -- an unexpected and affecting touch. Buttrich also lets loose with his guitars in more interesting ways, like the rhythmic snorts that punctuate the verses of "Play W/You." Radeker gets her vocal moment to shine on Bus' best song, the lengthy "Poolhouse Blue," which moves along at a steady pace as an equally calming and soaring guitar line unfolds throughout its length. With some nice extra sonic touches -- like a brief answering machine snippet and, on "Mitsuo Downer," a brief performance on bells in the middle of the main song -- Bus is a fine effort from a band who deserved at least a little more attention than what they got.