Review Summary: Who could ask for anymore?
In the furor of revisionist history, we tend to forget that Oasis's supposed crossover into the mainstream was all but ignored by critics upon initial release. It's easy to read the NME
today and see the legend of What's the Story (Morning Glory)?
flogged for all its worth on page after page of vapid fawning; it's even easier to forget the same rag originally graced said album with a modest 7/10 score. The reason for all those tepid responses wasn't unjust, though; ...(Morning Glory)?
was and still is nothing more than an album of good pop songs. The difference is it crossed over and appealed to people without needing to do anything impressive. It was just a really good album. Much like Oasis before them, DMA's are more than willing to invite comparisons to their influences, and are able to articulate themselves better than most victims of the hype machine can. Hill's End
isn't impressive by any measure of ambition or wildness; it's just a really good album.
If all those comparisons to the Gallagher brothers seems ungainly, then give some consideration to lead singles "Too Soon" and "Lay Down"; it's hard not to embrace the sound of Cool Britannia when it's so readily referenced. They're from Sydney, New South Wales, but they specialize in a sort of music triumphed by Northern English nerd'wellers. Their live performances appear to be homage, a presence that finds itself somewhere between The Stone Roses' lackadaisical glory and Blur's campy tomfoolery. But beneath all that posturing is a wealth of hooks that all but excuse such easy similes. That's evident enough on opener "Timeless", which takes to pedaling an infectious chorus over anything that might be considered challenging. It sets a precedent for Hill's End
, which flexes its melodic muscles in fashion without ever getting anxious about how 'been there, done that' it all is. These songs aren't particularly original or inventive. They shamelessly dance around in the sound of others, eager to please if not challenge or provoke. Then again, the originals they so shamelessly rip-off and reappropriate were never much more than imitations of The Beatles and The Smiths; they just understood that good songs needed good hooks. Hill's End
is an album of good songs with good hooks; who could ask for anymore?