Sunday, June 18, 2017
Hundredth : "Rare"
While I like these guys, I think before you are quick to throw the post-punk label on them and start comparing them to The Smiths or Joy Division, know that they have much more in common with Silversun Pickups. The cooed androgynous yawn of the vocals begin to start sounding the same come the second song. This also reminds me of many of the post Pumpkins bands that came out of Britain in the late 90s - early 00s. They some times pack a little more of a metallic punch. Word on the street is these guys used to be a hard core band. They stay in the middle of the road shoe-gaze inspired flavor of alternative rock . There is a little bit of a more Stone Roses like feel to "Hole". The vocals don't change, but tempo wise things are more driving. Lyrically it's also a little more interesting.
By the time we get to "Suffer" it's starting to feel like they are slightly a one trick pony. They have more of a punk thing going with the attack of "Disarray" . The vocals keep on the same track they have for the entire album. They bring it back down for "Down". The guitars and vocals are equally smooth as they coast along with the mid tempo beat. Yelled background vocals coast in during the songs final moments. They album is well produced and they get some awesome guitar tones. It's also very monochrome when it comes to the emotional notes they hit. "Shy Vein" has some darker notes to it before building up into a guitar part that would not sound out of place on a Cult album. I am sure they want to be compared to the Cure, but for a former punk band they seem to have forgotten where they came from. Some weird effects creep in to change the colors in a few spots.
There are a few spots where it sounds like the bass could use more balls and if the tone growled a little more it might make this sonically heavier. The vocals finally take on a little more of a croon on "Chandelier" this makes it one of the album's more solid songs as I don't need lots of change just a little more shading in terms of dynamics. On 'Youth " the vocals have an almost Morrissey like croon and they stay in a lower register, though smooth higher end of baritone for the last song as well. That is what this album needed as those songs before this where becoming a blur. Their guitar tone can compensate for a lot otherwise. The invisible bass player never really surfaces like they need to , but the guitars are well layered. I'll give this album an 8.5 , they do a good job for what it is , you just need to adjust your expectations realistically when defining what that is.