Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Drums - Portamento

Album Reviews

October 2011


Cover Art: The Drums, 'Portamento'

With a foppish yodel and a jaunty guitar shuffle, this Brooklyn band's self-titled 2010 debut LP slotted easily alongside descendants of the Smiths and the Strokes. Maybe too easily. Guitarist Adam Kessler's exit makes room for a more overtly expansive approach on the Drums' just as solid sophomore outing, with chopped-up vocals, burbling synths, and cooing harmonies that should place them firmly in the sophisticated-yet-naive pop tradition of Saint Etienne or Swedish labels Service, Sincerely Yours, and Labrador. The Drums was as sunny as new romance, though; emotionally conflicted and at times misanthropic, Portamento is about finding out that only love can break your heart.

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Press Mentions

"Goes over the top and stays there to very nice effect."
-- David Carr, The New York Times

"I wasn't fully convinced. But I was interested."
-- Rob Walker, The New York Times

"...as Marc Hogan wrote in Spin..."
-- Maureen Dowd, The New York Times

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