Fuck you, 1980s. I mean that.
I’ve heard enough music from bands trying to emulate that new wave garbage to last me seven lifetimes. The inevitable comparison here, the Killers, are just the tip of the iceberg. Sadly, underground music is seemingly filling to the brim with bands riding this trend, and it’s a sad, sad thing to see.
Rock Kills Kid is just another of the myriad of bands who listened to way too many Duran Duran records, and thought that style would stand up now in 2006. No, no it does not. Had I been old enough to listen to music in 1986, I probably wouldn’t have liked it then either. Seems everyone who champions this style cites it as being “so catchy dude” or “infectious.” I find it to be neither. No, quite the contrary, I actually find it to be all kinds of boring and no kinds of redeeming.
And while I can tell you that this bashing is warranted, remarkably, the band does succeed in one area. They’re able to create a very solid musical atmosphere. The guitars sound straight out of a Cure record, and the overall feeling taken from the album is one of sorrow, a motif they are clearly trying to portray. So in that right, they’re successful. The music sounds crisp and the harmonies enjoyable, on the non-dance oriented tracks, anyhow. Unfortunately for all involved, the majority of songs are those geared towards dance, and while the atmosphere still does fit the style, the style still sucks. Leading off with “Paralyzed,” a song centered on the same repetitive mix of deep bass and bass drum, you know pretty much what you’re in for. The staggered melodic riffing is in time with the start-and-stop vocal delivery, and the chorus is repeated ad nauseum. Not unusual for this style of music, but annoying just the same.
The style is unfortunate, because you really get the feeling from these songs that the band members are capable of something better, and, at very least, something different. I’d much rather have them try and be the Cure than try and be Duran Duran. But regardless, that’s not the direction that was gone with.
Here’s to hoping this style will pass, much like the awful decade that spawned it.