Sunday, January 26, 2014
Back To Sleep
I think what I like best about Back To Sleep is that even with all of its stylistic diversity, it maintains a consistent quality. If you can "progress" as a band yet still keep it fun and catchy, you're gonna win me over fast! These are by far the best songs that Makeouts have ever written, and all of it works. The straight-ahead garage rockers recalling the '60s ("Creeps", "Back To Sleep") or '90s ("Let It All Go", "Up") fit right in with ballsy punk blasters like "Warkids" and delightful rootsy janglers such as "Not Where You Belong". And some of my favorite cuts were pleasant surprises. The poppy "Bringin' Out The Stars" suggests a less polished Barracudas, while the crackling "Time Will Tell" brings to mind Sweden's own Locomotions. "Plastic Bag" is straight up '77 punk/new wave that makes me wanna pogo. And haunting album closer "It Wasn't My Idea To Dance" is almost a complete break from the band's "garage" M.O. (imagine Lee Hazelwood on an acid trip with The Mojomatics). Clearly this is not a band that's limiting itself in terms of the types of songs it's willing to write. From an energy and production standpoint, they remain the quintessential garage band. But by challenging themselves creatively, they've really allowed their exceptional talent to come shining through. I see Makeouts graduating from being known as a great garage band to being known as a great rock n' roll band, period. Back To Sleep is the first truly great garage punk album I've heard in quite some time. No surprise that it was released on Bachelor!