Thursday, March 29, 2007

Myths of the Near Future

Posted on Thu, Mar 29, 2007 at 4:00 AM

Myths of the Near Future
Label: Geffen Records
Length: LP
Rated: NONE
Website: http://www.klaxons.net
Release Date: 2007-03-27
Media: CD
Format: Album
WorkNameSort: Myths of the Near Future

Myths of the Near Future (Geffen) Only painful things can come of subscribing to hype. Klaxons, hype aside, bring an interesting argument to re-evaluating what's on your turntable: Theirs is an animal with several personalities. Their full-length debut, Myths of the Near Future, is a colorful leap into British art-school pop that channels Blur's Parklife with rallying choruses that ring out through the end of blissful numbers like 'Golden Skansâ?� and tricky, part-programmed tempos and outboard effects that loom beneath more chants on 'Isle of Her.â?� The problem that some record buyers will have with the Klaxons is easily explained; it has significantly less to do with the band than with what people have read about the band. Hype strikes again, and if you're dimwitted enough to have considered the Strokes the second coming of the Velvet Underground, then that's your own fault.

Because of a remark from singer/songwriter/bassist Jamie Reynolds and the club-floor aesthetic that runs through most of Myths of the Near Future ' live drums smash out dance beats behind a setup of bass, guitar, keyboards and many pedals ' Klaxons have invited rampant comparisons with the rave acts that came along when these London gents were in grade school. The much-discussed William Burroughs-inspired 'Atlantis to Interzoneâ?� (originally featured on their Xan Valleys

EP) rides recurring rave sirens and Reynolds' grumbling, liquid bass line before it breaks briefly into bouts of yelled vocals and silly backups. It's far less compelling than 'Two Receivers,â?� which also builds from dance beats, but packs dramatic arpeggiated piano figurations until it's sent soaring on the tailspin of the verse and chorus melodies, delivered simultaneously.

Klaxons love fragmented moments like those on 'Atlantis to Interzone,â?� and on Myths, they happen all the time. But they're also grinning when they're mimicking the Stone Roses' debut, as they do by incorporating a Madchester-esque shuffle a la 'Waterfallâ?� on 'Forgotten Works,â?� one of Myths' defining moments: It's baked with high energy and fanciful, frequently shifting tempos. The subsequent 'Magickâ?� is significantly more psychotic, with frenzied, danceable jolts of distorted keyboards and shouts during virtually indecipherable verse portions. The band lobs into half-time stomps on the 'Magickâ?� choruses, if for no other reason than to cool off. By this time, Myths of the Near Future itches like a rash; there's been thunderous pop, a ubiquitous falsetto, drunken club-night bangers and raucous, brawl-rousing punk. It's enough to make the hype machine collapse on the ailing frame of its own hysterical bullshit dissemination.

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