She Wants Revenge is a strange little band to place. On one hand, they have a slightly interesting sound (at least to someone who normally doesn’t listen to this type of music), have rather personal lyrics, and that dude sure does have a decent voice. Then, on the other, they reuse that same sound for 52 minutes, those lyrics are very cliché and that guys voice is the same for ~38 minutes (we must take into the godsend moments where we are reprieved.). So where exactly does that place them in my book? Squarely in the “General reasons for the reason I don’t listen to all this indie and alternative nonsense."
If you’re “in the know", you’ve probably heard the single off of She Wants Revenge
, Tear You Apart
. And if you’re like me, you thought it was a neat little single to boot. The drum machine and guitar were, obviously, pretty cool, and the guy just sounded so absolutely depressed he was just irresistible. The lyrics were also pretty cool, as he detailed some strange prom date or crush or whatever. The rather dark atmosphere of the song is refreshing in today’s assault-style radio rock, and who could resist the moan that’s present in the background of the album? The song intrigued me, so immediately (like the wannabe-pirate that I am) I went and downloaded the album. For a couple of weeks, I really enjoyed it. Then, something went wrong. I played the album after a few days of not listening, and all of the sudden, I couldn’t differentiate between any of them. "Oh no,"
I thought, what ever am I to do? Why, write a negative review for sputnik!"
That leads us here, where I am to begin the dissecting of this album. However, why not start with some good points? The general sound of She Wants Revenge is actually quite interesting, they create a bleak and morose sound that is pretty much devoid of any of those “happy feely" thoughts that ruins music so often. The guitar tones capture the essence of lonely despair perfectly, and Justin Warfield’s vocals (they remind me of Joy Division
kinda, and most people seem to agree, but lest we forget, Joy Division
blows anyways) are quite the downtrodden ones indeed. The lyrics consist of much sexual innuendo and “wah wah I miss her", and there are a few moments of slight lyrical brilliance.
Unfortunately, that’s all I can say I like about the album, and most of that becomes completely and utterly irritating after a few playthroughs. Starting out with the lyrics this time around, Warfield seems to have just had the worst love life ever. Seriously, lines like “Lovers hold hands to numb the pain“
(from These Things
) show how absolutely sick he must be of love, but when there are 1435 lines similar on this album, it generally loses its impact. The sexxin’ lines are also equally bad and totally corny, with the chorus of Monologue
being the most laughable of these; “If your afraid to say/But you’d/like to try/Just give me the safe word and take your hand/And smack me in the mouth, my love “
. Oh, guess what? That’s right, there’s another 742 lines exactly like that on this album as well, and you’d better believe I’ve seen at least twenty myspaces with She Wants Revenge lyrics as headlines.
That’s not really a criticism though, is it? No, but the fact everything plain sounds the same is. While some songs do gladly reprieve us of this (These Things, I Don’t Want to Fall in Love,
in particular), most of the junk here bleeds together. It’s an unfortunate thing to happen, as when you first hear Red Flags And Long Nights
you should be summarily blown away by its faux-epic leanings and dark overtures. However, when you begin to play through the album once again, you’ll notice two things: Out of Control
is just one of the worst songs ever, and that nearly every song could use trimming. Red Flags and Long Nights
runs an impressive 5 minutes, but that’s with a minute and a half of absolute boring to begin with, and then of the same old “hey, we’re sad, dig it" lyrics and echo-ey guitars.
So, what ultimately kills this record is blandness and repetition, with a little bit of overblowness to round it all out. What She Wants Revenge basically does here is take one or two good ideas, and then run rampant through the streets of music town with them, all the while forgetting to maybe trade those ideas in for newer models. They obviously have created something slightly special, but when you can’t be bothered to listen past track 6, what have you really accomplished? I’d give this a 2.5 “in-genre", but it’s just a bad album anywhere else. She Wants Revenge
receives a reluctant 2, and I can only hope they either shorten up the music next time, or perhaps learn that people occasionally like a happy-touchy-feely song with their /wrists stuff.
I Don’t Wanna Fall in Love
Tear You Apart