Archive for the ‘spacey’ tag
This Machine, the new record from Portland, Oregon’s The Dandy Warhols, is – if nothing else – confident. The band is known for their wan blend of shoegaze-y garage rock and psychedelia, and This Machine bears out that reputation admirably: crunchy drums, plenty of bluesy guitar jangle, and loose vocal work call immediately to mind the best of ‘90s alt-rock. The band’s commitment to understated pop songwriting recalls records like Weezer’s Pinkerton, but on the whole the Dandy Warhols seem less ambitious. Not to mention a whole hell of a lot more easygoing.
But don’t think the Warhols are afraid of being called anthemic. About half of the record is composed of solid, genre-staple tunes, ranging from the middle-of-the-road to the curiously-epic. (“16 Tons” and “SETI vs. The Wow! Signal” both exhibit the band’s unfortunate tendency to reach just a little too far out of their wheelhouse, the former a sort of lifeless Delta-blues tune and the latter a puzzling Jet imitation.) On these songs, sometimes spacey melodies float over a trundling rhythm section (late highlight “Rest Your Head,”) and sometimes the band gets a little more Raw-Power-era Stooges (album opener “Sad Vacation”), but the rock backbone remains intact. The other half of the record leans further out, and the Warhols’ experimentation meets with mixed results; “Alternative Power To The People” is all bones and no meat, while “Don’t Shoot She Cried” plays guitar feedback against ethereal vocals to angelic effect.