Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Rumble Strips - Girls and Weather - 2007

The Rumble Strips don't take any chances on Girls and Weather, but that's because they don't need to. If the Devon foursome's fun, innocent, and refreshingly light tone -- not to mention their eschewing of guitars in favor of horns -- isn't enough to make their debut album stand out, then their musicianship and wry lyrics certainly are. It takes a few listens to discern the Rumble Strips' technical proficiency, because it's all too easy to get caught up in the fun that they're having instead. There's no build-up to the revelry -- Girls and Weather gets off to a rollicking start with "No Soul," a tune that sounds a bit like a Kaiser Chiefs tune that replaces synthesizers with a deliberately off-kilter brass section. It's immediately followed by "Alarm Clock," which tells the story of a young slacker through the use of an infectious melody, singalong chorus, and cheery self-deprecation. Happy melodies coupled with bittersweet lyrics are a running theme throughout the album, but it's a formula that works well for the Rumble Strips, especially when they're poking fun at the Walter Mitty-like fantasies of average Joes. The best example of this on the album is "Motorcycle," a riotous take on the "cars and girls song" that alternates between the mundane reality of a 10-speed bike and the sunny fantasy of a motorized chick magnet. There are times when the band's giddiness is a little too overwhelming -- the repetition of the chorus on "Clouds" quickly goes from endearing to annoying -- but it's a minor complaint in the end. Girls and Weather loses neither steam nor charm throughout; it's an album for adults who want an excuse to behave like kids again. -AMG

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2 comments:

Johnny PDX said...

Nice Boys, very nice boys! Here in PDX we are stocked about a new Power Pop band that is literally taking over and released a great CD "The CRY!" is all the buzz... check them out! Vocals are stupid awesome
www.thecrypdx.com

snakeboy said...

Thanks for introducing me to all of the wonderful music, new and old.

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