Tag Archives: Indie rock

This Town Needs Guns – 13.0.0.0.0 (2013)

This Town Needs Guns - 13.0.0.0.0 (2013)

This Town Needs Guns are a band from the UK, formed in 2004 and here returning with their second album.

I didn’t really enjoy this album. The vocals are reminiscent at times of a band such as Coldplay or Travis and sometimes Paul Weller in The Jam, while the guitar is mostly jangly indie-rock; there are certainly some interesting turns in the guitars, with a seemingly strong jazz influence, especially in the way vocals and guitar interact on for example opening track, Cat Fantastic. There is also a lot of math-rock style riffs, which is more interesting to listen to than most indie rock/pop; however, I feel that overall I found the album a little boring.

Despite that, there are two tracks which I really did enjoy, Nice Riff Clichard is a complete departure from the rest of the album, forming a sort of dream-pop instrumental over trip-hop beats, which I found particularly engaging and would happily listen to a whole album of, though the track is tragically short; and +3 Awesomeness Repels Water, probably the most math-rock outing, which somehow elevates itself above the rest of the album.

Overall, this album isn’t for me, but I think a lot of people will like it, so perhaps give it a go.

Favourite tracks: Nice Riff Clichard, +3 Awesomeness Repels Water, Triptych

Bandcamp link: http://thistownneedsguns.bandcamp.com/
Spotify link: This Town Needs Guns – 13.0.0.0.0
Sneak peak: 

 

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Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse (2013)

Frightened Rabbit - Pedestrian Verse (2013)

Scottish indie rockers, Frightened Rabbit, return with their fourth studio album.

So, it’s fairly rock infused indie with big guitars. Vocalist Scott Hutchison’s Scottish accent adds a bit of interest to the tracks, sometimes gaining something of a classic Celtic folk feeling.

However, it all seems a bit pedestrian to me. It didn’t really do it for me, to be honest. It’s not that it’s a bad album, I just found it a little boring. The production values are high and they can certainly play and sing, but this just really isn’t my thing. Sorry.

Favourite tracks: State Hospital, The Woodpile.

Spotify link: Frightened Rabbit – Pedestrian Verse
Sneak peak: 

Fergus & Geronimo – Funky Was the State Of Affairs (2012)

Fergus & Geronimo - Funky Was the State Of Affairs (2012)

Fergus & Geronimo are a duo from Texas who formed around 2008; Funky Was the State of Affairs is their second full-length album after Unlearn (2011).

It’s really hard to know what to make of Funky Was the State of Affairs, it is evident that Fergus & Geronimo keep their tongue very firmly in their cheek, but they don’t seem to be as overtly satirical as they perhaps wanted to be; and, in that respect, they feel like a more narrowly focussed Ween, Mothers of Invention or Residents. So they tend to stay in fairly safe musical territory; on the whole, this is lo-fi indie rock with a great deal of influence from the late 70s/early 80s, but interspersed with pretty obscure short skits, taking in paranoia, intergalactic dating, conspiracy theories and elevator muzak. 

No Parties is the first song on the album and, along with later track, Off The Map, sounds a fair bit like the B-52s. Continuing in the same vein, Roman Tick harks to the punk/garage rock era, sounding like the Buzzcocks or Stiff Little Fingers, while Spies is a totally anachronistic track compared with the rest, sounding like the Kinks or the Small Faces, and seems altogether out of place (not that the “place” is easy to place, if you know what I mean). Earthling Men is pure Devo-influenced choppy pop and Roman Numerals is an ode to the titular numeric representations, discussing everything from Star Wars prequels, Rambo sequels and World Wars to volumes of books and Boyz II Men, all in a They Might Be Giants crossed with Sesame Street style (in retrospect here, this track reminds me of The Most Unwanted Song, a “scientifically made” track incorporating all the most hated musical cliches, made by artists Komar and Melamid, along with experimental musical composer Dave Soldier, who composed for Sesame Street on a number of occasions). The title track, Funky Was the State of Affairs ends the album and is a fairly good rhythm and blues freak out, with wailing sax, pounding drums and funky basslines, again anachronistic to the rest, but a suitable closer.

Overall the scope is relatively narrow and it all feels a bit like a joke you don’t quite get or don’t quite find that funny. Not to be completely unfair to Fergus & Geronimo, the music is good, but It is hard to tell where their honest intent ends and the satire starts; almost as though they are a bit less satirical than they think they are. Maybe a few more listens will make me “get it”?

Favourite tracks: Roman Numerals/Wiretapping Muzak I, Earthling Men, Funky Was the State of Affairs

Bandcamp link: http://fergusandgeronimo.bandcamp.com/album/funky-was-the-state-of-affairs-lp-2012
Spotify link: Fergus & Geronimo – Funky Was the State of Affairs
Sneak peak: