They've given listeners plenty of big ideas to chew over.
Lou Thomas 2009-06-29
Amazing Baby are the latest tuneworthy graduates of Connecticut's Wesleyan University. Other Wesleyan alumni include psych-rock hitmakers MGMT and beguiling electro-art slackers Chairlift, so it's no surprise the blogosphere has been frothing. The central duo of Ashcroftian frontman Will Roan and guitarist Simon O'Connor have not quite settled on one distinctive sound for this debut album but have given listeners plenty of big ideas to chew over.
Bayonets is a blast of grown up Black Kids angst with a nifty string-swept coda and Roan in emotive form as he apes Elvis Costello's vocal approach. Invisible Place is just as porky and sounds like Spirtualized and Elbow getting tooled-up to take on Marc Bolan.
Deerripper grooves in sexy, undulating fashion like some undiscovered Happy Mondays tune where Afghan Whig Greg Dulli has supplanted Sean Ryder. It's a shame, as a song title of this nature deserves nothing less than frenzied, neck-severing, disembowelling carnage.
Titular concerns don't have any bearing on the lentil-stained Kaftan cobblers of Kankra, which redeems itself with Jesus And Mary Chain-patented fuzz and an incongruous, but welcome, Northern Soul beat.
More angry is the Pixies by way of The Stills dynamism of Smoke Bros. Lyrically it hits the spot, too. ''We are starving cannibals/she protects her animals'', sings Roan. No wonder with the Deerripper out there.
There's no real excuse for the sub-Spinal Tap acoustic lobotomy of The Narwhal and Roverfrenz's shop-soiled Mercury Rev shuffle is not quite as good as the band it references, but at least Rewild isn't short on ideas.
If they can polish a few of those ideas into perfection on future releases, Amazing Baby may just live up to their own moniker.