The Strokes- Is This It?
The Strokes are:
- Julian Casablancas: Vocals
- Nick Valensi: Guitar
- Albert Hammond Jr.: Guitar
- Nikolai Fraiture: Bass
- Fabrizio Moretti: Drums
The Strokes have released their debut on 2001. Produced by Gordon Raphael, these 5 New- Yorkers brought back the garage rock and opened a path for many bands, interestingly, all ending with "es."
The first thing that you notice about The Strokes' music is, they really sound like a band, and all of the instruments are moving together perfectly with high speed. You can hear every single instrument separately, the magic is, they mix in pretty well. Members of the band have control of their instruments. They're not virtuosos, but they know what they're playing.
Is This It:
The album starts off with a middle- tempo song. It's like a preview of The Strokes sound. The chorus, which consists of Julian singing, "Is this it?" is really catchy. A very melodic song, but not the best.
The Modern Age:
This is my personal favourite. Starts off with just drums and guitar, the song kicks in with a reggae- style lead part and fast strumming at the background. This is a very fast song. In the chorus, the stress of high speed turns into clarity. An awesome solo cuts the voice of Julian. But he takes his revenge shortly after by pulling the band back into the verse. The song ends suddenly, right after Julian sings, "So this is why I'm leaving."
Again, a very melodic song. Julian's vocals seem like pulled off from a conversation between two friends. The whole song is at a certain tempo, which seems boring, but just as you start to think about it, Julian goes mad shouting "Said I've been doing this twenty five years. Well, I'm not listening no more." When he finishes releasing his anger, he says, "That's it." And the song ends there.
Probably the fastest song in the album (keep in mind that I'm not talking about fast as in thrash metal). In the verse, the lead guitar interrupts the band in every line. In the bridge, the band plays one chord for like 5 seconds and you expect Julian to do something outrageous, but he just says a quick "Nothing." I find this a very joyful song.
This song is about remembering "the good old days". It's a very optimistic song about how good the past was. The main riff is cool, and the drumming is very good. I liked its video too.
This one is supposed to be a ballad, but it's still a moving song. Julian's lyrics are pretty dark here: "Life seems unreal, can we go back to your place?" Awesome bass lines and a great solo in the middle of the song. This song is very catchy too. One of my favourites.
This is the song that Sum 41 copied their video for "Still Waiting". It's starts off with a C chord, then drums come in, and the song slowly develops into the verse. I think the lyrics are about human behaviours and how illogical they can get. Anyways, this song has nice chord progressions and it's fun.
Hard to Explain:
The drums sound like a drum machine or something has made them up. (I'm pretty sure that Fabrizio plays them.) Surprisingly, it gives a song a new dimension instead of making it emotionless. It is again a very fast track, and has a mood change in the middle of the song, which is layered very cleverly.
When It Started:
I don't know why, but this song always reminds me of the Japanese video games. This song is also on the Spider- Man soundtrack. This is a slightly depressing song, and not a stand out.
Trying Your Luck:
This is another ballad, and the saddest song in the album, and probably the calmest one. With full chords, melodic leads and an emotional solo, the song is fluent and well arranged.
Take It or Leave It:
The album ender is the hardest one. Typical Strokes sound, with a more aggressive touch. It is catchy, and melodic. Makes me want to sing, "Take it or leave it!" every time.
If you don't like the Strokes's sound, you won't like anything by them, but if you do, then it will be an addiction. In my opinion, this album is perfect and even though it's the same sound, the songs don't repeat themselves. In every song, you will find a part that is worth listening to.
New York City Cops:
This song is not available in the U.S. version of "Is This It?" because of its content. Instead, The Strokes put When It Started in the U.S. version. (This song is available on the U.K. version). This is a harder song compared to When It Started, and I personally think NYCC is better. I love the lyrics on this song, "New York City cops, they ain't too smart." It is a simple song, but there's nothing wrong with simplicity, right?
Overall Rating: 9/10.
As I said before, if you like The Strokes in general, you'll love this album.