JAPANDROIDS – CELEBRATION ROCK
- Cameron Barnett
- Sunday, 15 July 2012
The Japandroids’ 2009 debut Post-Nothing was a noisy, exuberant, melody-stuffed masterpiece. The duo’s intense, abrasive punk anthems won critics and rock fans over with their achingly honest themes of love, summer and that thrilling yet uncertain time between being young and growing up. In many ways, follow-up Celebration Rock is strikingly similar to its predecessor. Both albums are 35 minutes long and consist of eight furiously-paced tracks without a single ballad or slow number between them. The monstrous guitar sounds, adenoidal singing and even the album covers are all but identical too. However, this is permissible for one reason and one reason only – like Post-Nothing, Celebration Rock does what it sets out to do flawlessly. Fire’s Highway sets retrospective marvelling (“We dreamed it, now we know!”) to an impossibly huge singalong chorus. The House That Heaven Built, built around a two-chord guitar riff, proves without question that less can often be more, and the fuzzy Adrenaline Nightshift sounds like The Stooges at their most enthusiastic and wide-eyed. The Japandroids have taken the raucous sounds of early garage rock, and taken further cues from the shamelessly melodic pop-punk of the 90s, to create another neat nostalgic blockbuster which, if not entirely distinct from their first, easily matches it. ****
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