This Modern Glitch
May 24, 2011 Web Exclusive
"Please allow me to be your anti-depressant/I too am prescribed as freely as any decongestant," Wombats lead singer Matthew Murphy pleads unironically on "Anti-D," one of the tracks from This Modern Glitch. In the video for the song, Murphy skulks around a sunny suburban neighborhood clad in all black. Instead of feeling empathetic, you just want to buy him a lemonade so he'll leave.
Glitch is the Liverpool band's second LP, following their surprisingly cheeky 2007 debut A Guide to Love Loss & Desperation. Whereas that album's hit single "Let's Dance to Joy Division!" (the title lyric finishes, "...and celebrate the irony") had the right amount of whimsy to drive home the band's Franz Ferdinand-style of full throttle synth-rock, Glitch is an inconsistent spin of driving yet ultimately unmemorable dance-punk tracks.
Even on first single "Tokyo (Vampires & Wolves)," which is maybe the band's best and catchiest song to date, Murphy expresses his touring ennui with the refrain, "I'm sick of dancing with the beast." Arctic Monkeys' Alex Turner can pull off this kind of mopey swagger while still tapping toes, but for all of their infectious dance-floor grooves, The Wombats could stand to lighten up a bit. (www.thewombats.co.uk)
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