Sunday, 10 June 2012

The 200k Dozen: #209 - Japandroids, "Celebration Rock"

Noise pop from Vancouver with guitars and long hair and that. I liked their first album, blood vessel-tickling good times cool. Skateboards for goalposts: you get the idea; indie stuff. So now there's a new piece of work.

It opens with phased, loud guitars and fingers working hard - "The Nights of Wine and Roses". The same sounds pop up on the second track too - "Fire's Highway". Two dimensional. I don't get a real sense of velocity. The tension isn't really there, nothing accumulates - just stretches out before me like a huge featureless car park. "For the Love of Ivy" has more of a swampy rockabilly flavour but is still too bright and shiny. I suspect their hair is also bright and shiny.

I like the title "Adrenaline Nightshift" and I can hear the lyrics aren't weighed down with obvious ideas. If anything, my problem is that they aren't obvious enough. Unless they are all about partying and being in a band. "Death's got no respect for Love/And you've got no respect for me" sounds a bit heavy, mind. I just don't really buy it linked with this bright and breezy music. False memories of "Younger Us" that everything was exciting and simple, papering over the yawning chasms of doubt and experimentation that existed there too. I think it bothers me.

"And if they try to slow you down/Tell them all to go to Hell" they sing on "The House That Heaven Built" as guitars run and run underneath without getting anywhere. Endless House on the Prairie meadows or somesuch. The last track's called "Continuous Thunder" and that's maybe the problem: that the thunder never stops and becomes background noise of "Yeah, yeah, yeah".

Rating: Brightly Jangle out of No Tension 

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