The Drums
Portamento


3.0
good

Review

by Jade Royal EMERITUS
February 1st, 2013 | 18 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: I want to buy you something, but I don't have any MONEY!

Have you ever wondered what kind of indie album you and your friends would make, if given the proper resources? Sure, you’ve always had some good songwriting ideas, but you’ve always been reluctant to make full-blown music out of them. Your friends know how to play their instruments, and they’re nothing special at them, but they don’t need to be. So why not put an album together?

This is an easy picture to imagine upon hearing The Drums’ sophomore album, Portamento: a cool group of guys, solid musical ideas and a pervading lack of confidence. The indie outfit simply doesn’t believe in itself enough, and when it does it’s for too brief a time. When Portamento concludes with stellar track “How It Ended,” for instance, it’s hard to not wonder what the album could’ve been if accompanied by the clear confidence the song has to offer. Each time the instrumentation lures in the listeners, the album’s meekness forces them away. And maybe the most blatant example of this is Jonny Pierce’s inconsistent work behind the microphone. Sometimes he paints a vivid picture of a hopeless romantic, one to which we all can relate. “Money” works best in this regard; sure, the vocals are rough in the track, but the quality fits the rough aesthetic. And this is what separates The Drums from the rest of the indie rock pack, the fact that the group wants to be more polished than they really should be.

However, Portamento does offer some exciting moments for indie. The album’s first half is the most solid, emphasizing Pierce’s to-the-point lyrics regarding the usual fare: love, hurt and bitterness. And while the storytelling isn’t particularly original, there’s something alluring about the topics’ familiarity. This makes up for the vocals’ sometimes rocky delivery, and is perhaps even the album’s strongest feature. The truth is that Portamento would be a bland release without the introspective vocals, which give the tracks a confirmed purpose.

The Drums’ sophomore release, if nothing more, serves as a palette of tested ideas. It’s easiest to view the album as an experiment of sorts, with the band figuring out exactly what style of indie comes most naturally. And what makes this release most appealing is its approachable manner. From the personal lyrics to the lighthearted instrumentation, Portamento is intimate in nature and meaningful for the introverted. After all, this album could have even been written by your neighbors, because they’ve been experiencing the same woes as you. And would you have ever guessed it?



Recent reviews by this author
Fero Lux No RestSuis La Lune Distance/Closure
bansheebeat LumineKendrick Lamar To Pimp a Butterfly
Bjork VulnicuraStolas Allomaternal
user ratings (103)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Jade
Emeritus
February 1st 2013


10675 Comments


This album's pretty good, and I didn't give it enough credit here. Instant regret!

Digging: clipping. - Splendor and Misery

Killerhit
February 1st 2013


5915 Comments


Nice review

Brostep
Staff Reviewer
February 1st 2013


4255 Comments


Sweet review Jacob, have a pos. Feedback coming soon, just need some free time to cobble it together

Jade
Emeritus
February 1st 2013


10675 Comments


Thanks guys, have you heard this album?

Jade
Emeritus
July 7th 2013


10675 Comments


I FORGOT THAT I WROTE THIS REVIEW

Rev
July 7th 2013


9717 Comments


Haha


I should check this out

brainmelter
October 24th 2015


2585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this is pretty nostalgic for me. when I went to San Francisco for a week I listened to this album the whole time I was there.

surprised there is no sputlove for this at all



Digging: Kinoko Teikoku - Long Goodbye

PappyMason
January 16th 2016


5521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I've never heard any of their full lengths, but I've always dug the odd song I've heard from them. I do like their sound.

Digging: Galaxie 500 - On Fire

brainmelter
January 16th 2016


2585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

should check, this is pre nice for what it is

PappyMason
January 16th 2016


5521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah, I've just downloaded this.



Keep you posted/

brainmelter
January 16th 2016


2585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

;) (;

PappyMason
January 17th 2016


5521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Whoa, 'Searching For Heaven' comes out of nowhere and is so interesting.



Yeah, this is really enjoyable. Just how I imagined it to be.

Also, I just came back from San Fran like last week...

PappyMason
January 22nd 2016


5521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I actually really like this. All is good.

brainmelter
January 22nd 2016


2585 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

awe yeah man! I'm really glad you dig this

perfect for San Fran travels:]

PappyMason
January 23rd 2016


5521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I Need a Doctor is such a great song too!



Yeah, I've picked up their first album and EP too.

Jade
Emeritus
January 23rd 2016


10675 Comments


Do not remember this album one bit

theBoneyKing
January 23rd 2016


4298 Comments


I remember hearing this and their first album around the time they were released and I remember them being very forgettable.

Digging: American Music Club - California

bach
June 15th 2016


15152 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the days go by



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2016 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy