deathrowradio ~ Yummy

deathrowradioMany will be shocked when they hear this new record, asking, “Is this really d_rradio, the duo who released the lovely ambient album Forecast a couple years ago?” While prior works have been marked by diversity, few expected pounding percussion and swirling guitars ~ yet that’s what Yummy offers, in spades.  Dropping the ambience and abandoning the laptops is a bold move. Previous fans may be alienated, while new ones may be added.  Whatever one may think of this shift, it’s certainly ballsy.  We admire big risks, without which the music scene would be stagnant.

Opening track “Hocus Pocus” (no relation to the 1971 breakout hit from the Dutch band Focus) is the album highlight, a declarative statement that builds like a post-rock piece without ever toppling into climax.  The eight-minute track sets the stage with repeating riffs and a constant beat, while abrasive forces battle in the background.  The track acts as an overture; many of its elements resurface later in the album. The only one that doesn’t quite work is the constant drum; one yearns for the drummer to do more than keep the pace.  “Give Over” and “Super Good” (the remaining tracks on Side A) feature the same beat, albeit at different tempos, which makes them blend together.  This may have worked for The Ramones, but they had vocals.  When the pace is slower, this sound brings to mind the work of Sisters of Mercy, another vocal duo that thrived on repetition (but used a drum machine).

“A Little Less” succeeds where the previous two tracks do not, in that the drum sounds are varied, the bass is prominent and the dynamic contrast is increased.  The final minutes also include the use of handclaps, which evaporate in the song’s gentle fade.  At 5:03, it’s the obvious single.  Album closer “Boneless” uses a hitch beat, a dependable way to set dance floors ablaze.  Remixes of the aforementioned tracks would be a boon to the album, and we hope to hear some soon; a double-A side would expand the record’s potential audience to yet another field of fans.  (Richard Allen)

Available here

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