There's been already a lot of buzz about the Drums as they are conquering the hearts of Indie music fans on both sides of the pond.
This New York-Florida based band caught on my radar on September of 2009 with their 'Summertime' EP. The moment I heard the record I immediately noticed almost every song has this feel-good hooky chorus yet filled with some well clever lyrics. You could tell the band focused a lot on their melody style that it would be unfair not to hum along. But let's be honest, there are so many 80's influenced bands popping up like 'shrooms literally everyday - some are good and some are utterly shite. But, what separates The Drums from the rest is the way they put together their melodies to recreate those wonderful or heartbreaking memories from the 80’s. When you listen to the Cure-esque 'I Felt So Stupid' - it almost brought back memories in an eerie way of me actually grabbing the Cure's 'Disintegration' record from HMV store on King Street and going through the album catalog.
These well preppy lads with their distinctive signature look Varsity jacket, folded skinny Jeans accessorized with Jazz shoes; sometimes top it off with bow-tie (almost straight out of Fred Perry catalogue) are probably the most praised band hailed from the US this past decade. Their show attendees like The Smiths' bassist Andy Rourke and drummer Mike Joyce turned up at the City's Deaf Institute venue, even Morrissey popped in to a few of their shows. Boy George has been a fan of them ever since those early London gigs from last year, Edwyn Collins recruited them along with the Cribs on his next solo project. It seemed they all have affirmed it for us...who wouldn’t like a bit of support and blessings from their heroes.
Clearly, one thing I really like about The Drums is their grassroots approach by doing as many underground shows possible in New York City, which subsequently led them to become the New York’s official coolest new band by the underground music critics and needless to say their massive success in Camden Crawl this year catapult them in the front seat with the other top artists/bands. There's always a great hype after releasing a solid EP if the band could follow through with a successful album. But I don't think The Drums wanted to set any standard or live up to the critics expectations - they just wanted to put an album for their fans who can relate to those effortlessly spectacular tunes.
Their debut album opened with a cracking track 'Best Friend', although a very melodic tune, but it has this melancholic side of losing your best friend and never getting them back in your life. Obviously, their 1st international hit single 'Let's Go Surfing' (originally from their EP) seemed a bit Beach Boys surfing mood song, but their music style is so far from it. Apparently they wrote that song on the night of the election when Obama won - they felt the country finally came to an absolute halt of Bush's terms...a new beginning...a new era. ‘Forever and Ever, Amen’ is another great piece of composition about teenage adolescent and finding our own identities followed by ‘Down by the Water’ a very Smiths-esque type song. Other worth mentioning tracks from the record are ‘Book of Stories’, ‘It Will All End In Tears’ and ‘I’ll Never Drop My Sword’. Although I was a bit disappointed seeing 'I felt So Stupid' didn't make it to the final cut, but then again you can't have all the songs from the EP...somewhere you got to make room for the new tracks.
If you ask me, is it worth spending a few quid on their EP and LP? The answer is YES, ABSOLUTELY. Check your local show listings and track'em down to see them live. Trust me, you won't regret a bit, you'll walk out of there knowing your money was well spent – they are quite the live entertainers.
© - Words - Shahriar Islam/ ZANI Ltd