Towers of London - Blood Sweat & Towers (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Towers of London

Blood Sweat & Towers (2006)


For quite a while now, I've been asking for a full-length from Towers of London. This flashy five-piece has released three separate EPs in the last three years, totaling a meager seven songs between them. More importantly than the meager run-times, though, the band showed promise. They showed spunk and a knack for writing some rousing punk rock tunes, so naturally I thought that would be easily parlayed into a longer format.

Oh, how I wish I was right.

Somewhere along the line, the band lost sight of what made them so enjoyable in the first place. Or maybe not, maybe their style is just not such that it can be drawn out for an extended amount of time. Well one thing's for sure -- on Blood Sweat & Towers, the band unfortunately overstays their welcome.

Going from two or three songs per release to 15, that is undoubtedly where Towers of London went wrong. Baby steps, not gigantic leaps. It's immediately noticeable, too. The supremely catchy nature of prior efforts isn't present here, instead the band tries to stretch things too far with too little to offer, and get caught halfway through a song with the realization that there's nothing new around the corner. Short and sweet was the motto on the EPs, and short and sweet should have been the motto here too. More than any of that though, the songs aren't fun. They don't grab you and put a smile on your face, they don't make you bob your head or tap your foot, they do nothing but evoke a feeling of complete indifference in what is for lack of a better term, background music.

There's no reason that a song like "King" can go five minutes and maintain any level of interest, which is exactly why I would relegate the album as a whole to that unfortunate title of background music. The rhythms are boring, the vocals lack punch, and even the quick jump-starts occasionally provided by a guitar solo wear off before long. The inability to sustain any energy or intensity is crippling, and that song shows it. Even the quicker songs offer little in the way of enjoyment, as they're used as nothing more than a brief segue between the longer, and tragically boring tracks that populate this lackluster effort.

I think next time, I'll be careful what I wish for.