Album Review The Drums - The Drums

For some, it will be the soundtrack of the summer.

On the strength of the ‘Summertime’ EP and their infectious single ‘Let’s Go Surfing’, The Drums were catapulted to indie rock darlings seemingly overnight. Despite being pigeonholed by the mainstream as a new-era Beach Boys based purely on their most well-known track, it is evident on the basis of their hotly anticipated debut album that their sound is more akin to the likes of 80s hipsters.

‘Best Friend’ confirms these influences. The trite lyrics might well have been ripped out of the ‘How To Write A Smiths Song’ handbook - ‘You were my best friend / and then you died’ - but it is still one of the best indie tracks of the year so far, and one of the strongest on the album. ‘Book Of Stories’ is equally excellent, with an infectious melody and killer chorus that claims: ‘I thought my life would get easier / Instead it’s getting harder’. Musically throughout it’s a beautiful mix of jangly guitars and bass lines that gradually become achingly familiar.

Toward the end of the album, however, it becomes apparent that the majority of the songs open almost identically, particularly evident on the aforementioned ‘Book Of Stories’ and ‘The Future’. This leads to a dramatic shift in quality and it all becomes a little samey, with the last half sitting firmly in filler territory.

Having delivered the near perfect mini-album and a couple of decent singles, The Drums whetted appetites for more. Unfortunately, the resulting album package lacks the impact and immediacy of their previous work and, dare I say, is rather boring in comparison. For some, it will be the soundtrack of the summer, but for fans expecting something really special, it will no doubt be a wave of crushing disappointment.


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