Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Drums

Four bars into my first listen of The Drums' eponymous 2010 album, my first reaction was that Peter Hook and Bernard Sumner and their copyright lawyers should be contacted, for was I was hearing was a particularly shameless New Order ripoff. But after three more songs, they won me over. Yes, their sound—bouncy electropop bass, reverbed trebly guitar patterns, sing-songy Anglophilia—is derivative, but the trick with any act of stylistic necromancy is that good songs always trump accusations of larceny. I don't care if the Drums want to be the Brooklyn New Order, as long as they can write songs like these. The first half of the album is basically perfect, and only the slow one in the middle and maybe one other belonged on the cutting room floor. Lyrically, the songs deal with the usual Sad Love themes, but they also sing about dead best friends and surfing; in other words, confection pop neither too sour nor too sweet.

Here's "Skippin' Town":

And here's the heartwrenching "Book Of Stories", my vote for best breakup song of 2010:

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