Review Summary: An immediately likable, catchy, and fun record, turn this shit up and you won't be disappointed.
Simplicity is hard to do right in today’s music. Any Nickelback or Black Eyed Pea can make a simple album with hackneyed, instantly gratifying songs, but can a band create simple music without forfeiting quality and originality? Well, take a look at some of this year’s strongest releases- Animal Collective, Cymbals Eat Guitars, The Decemberists, mewithoutYou, Mew... it seems natural that more complicated music, when executed well, prevails over more simple counterparts. This duo from Vancouver is the anomaly. Japandroids, as they’re known, are a garage rock band with a knack for deafening rock anthems.
The first song, “The Boys Are Leaving Town”, comes on. Do me a favor please: look at what you have the volume set to, and turn it up threefold. A wave of fuzz floods the speakers and pretty soon so do the vocals, which sound pretty bland and dull at first. Don’t worry, this is just an appetizer, getting you ready for what’s to come. The entree will arrive soon. There’s a constant sound and mood throughout the album. The best way I have to describe it is sheer, unadulterated, and sincere noise. The next song, “Young Hearts Spark Fire,” is an absolute gem. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard such a genuine song with enough energy to make you wanna say “*** it,” and do something spontaneous and dangerous. The song is one giant build-up to the climax, “I don’t wanna worry about dyin’, I just wanna worry about sunshine girls,” he screams over a wall of distortion and percussion. I would add exclamation points where they are necesary, but I don’t want to run out of room here. Simple guitar, simple drumming, simple lines... it’s just amplified. The volume is turned to 11, per se.
Still have the volume turned up? Good, let’s keep it that way. “Wet Hair” will have you singing all 3 minutes and 12 seconds. Actually, “yelling” might be more appropriate. Irresistible lyrics are the staple of this track- “She had wet hair, say what you will, I don’t care, I couldn’t resist it.” The lead vocalist of Japandroids doesn’t have the greatest penchant for melody, but he sure knows passion. Every song is an anthem, which is both a pro and con. I find Post- Nothing is much more preferable at small doses. When “Young Hearts Spark Fire” comes on shuffle while you’re driving, it’s impossible not to turn up the volume as loud as it goes. Although, Post-Nothing loses its flavor a little when listened to all in one sitting.
When Japandroids is yelling over the deafening music about girls and parties, you believe them. There’s a quality of sincerity here that’s hard to find, and often taken for granted, in music today. Get the atmosphere, the setting, right, and you’ve got yourself one of the most fun, sincere, and solid releases of the year. At only 8 songs long, this is no chore to listen to. So what’s stopping you? Go out and buy Post-Nothing... I guarantee you’re sure to find at least one noise-rock anthem to suit you. But be prepared to buy some new speakers, because you’re gonna want to turn this up to 11.
Young Hearts Spark Fire
P.S. - If you ever come across the chance to see these guys live, DO NOT pass it up, I beg you.