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May 4, 2009 | by  | in Music | [ssba]

Japandroids Post-Nothing (Unfamiliar)

Ostensibly, it’d be soooo easy to group Vancouver duo Japandroids in with the wealth of lo-finoise pop bands getting repped all over the blogosphere (here’s looking at you, Wavves/Woods/Nodzzzz). I mean, look at them. Two guys, one plays drums, one plays guitar, they both sing on account of neither of them thought they could carry vocal duties on their own. Cute. They sing teen anthems about driving way too fast, French-kissing French girls, and getting drunk.

However, if there is a just and fair God/Allah/(insert chosen messiah here), their debut album Post-Nothing won’t be tossed aside onto the mountain of Woodsist/Fuckittapes bands piling up all over the world in 2009. For starters, Japandroids don’t just make punk songs, they write punk anthems. Six. Line. Punk. Anthems. Actually I say ‘punk’, but it’s hardly the three-chord pummel classic punk bands. The songs are longer, the lyrics are snappier (and fewer), and the drums are THIS MUCH LOUDER.

Young Hearts Spark Fire is probably the best track of the year so far for yours truly, five minutes of yelps, soaring “whoah-oh” moments, lyrics like “We can keep tomorrow out/tonight we’re not gonna need it/beat up, beat down/we’re too drunk to feel it,” which underline the point of this album—not world-changing turns of phrase or ‘meaningful’ authenticity, but holy-shit-keep-the-accelerator-on-the-floor youthful urgency and nostalgia. It’s a theme underlined by their penchant for covering McLusky’s ‘No Allegiance to the Queen’ live. Japandroids (in keeping with web 2.0 grammar, also referred to as JPNDRDS) soundtrack the nostalgic dream that Courtney Love fantasised about in Malibu (holla).

Accusations of lyrical complacency kind of miss the point too—the eight tracks on this album are pummeled out with the vigor and intensity of, well, feisty teenagers. The drumming is simple; the chord progressions loud and proud, most of the vocals are shouted rather than sung. Anything to lift the hooks over the top of the buzzsaw guitar attack, really. It’s eloquent in its simplicity, and brutally kicks more ass than Denzel in the last half of Man on Fire.

With all the emphasis on the fuzz recently, it’s miles beyond refreshing to listen to an album where the hailstorm of drums and way-too-fast chords actually play second fiddle to the massive choral hooks—you can make out the lyrics and buzz out to the riffs. Excessive to the point of elation, Post-Nothing is the best garage anthem record album I’ve heard in a few years. So, um, you should probably go buy it or something.

[ssba]

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  1. matthew says:

    totally. this shits all over wavves. and also, i hit my head on a faux-chandelier when i jumped off the couch playing air guitar to ‘wet hair’. so rock and roll.

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