Oct 11, 2012 Web Exclusive
Search any decent record store for any remotely genre-transcending record and it quickly becomes apparent that it's almost anachronistic that record shops still categorise music so rigidly by genre, a practice that surely should have gone out of the window the moment The Beatles' Revolver hit the stands. Take San Francisco's Ty Segall for example: throughout his career Segall has been pigeonholed as a garage rock artist, no matter how stylistically varied his output may continue to be.
New album Twins, whilst still ostensibly garage rock, continues along this same ambitious curve. It's neither a million miles from The New York Dolls and The Black Keys, nor is it a violent left-turn away from the dripping sex appeal of his earlier records Melted and Lemons. Rather this is the sound of the 1960s counter culture movement crashing headfirst into post punk, taking the discordant sound of rebellion from the former and melding it with the sweaty lo-fi chaos of the latter.
Case in point is "Handglams," one of the album highlights, whose opening riff gives a knowing nod to ELO's "10835 Overture" (or, if you want to be cruel, Paul Weller's "The Changingman") before breaking apart, its fuelled guitar solos crashing around the song's rhythm section. Twins' earlier and strongest tracks follow this pattern, The Kinks climbing into a car with The Who and becoming embroiled in a pile up with The Sonics on the back streets of Baltimore or New York.
It's a shame that Twins ends on something of a bum note. "Gold on the Shore" is an incongruous acoustic strumalong that sounds like something that might have been discarded by one of a billion Britpop also-rans for being too exciting, and closer "There Is No Tomorrow" plods, but this shouldn't overshadow a genuinely original album. (http://www.ty-segall.com)
Author rating: 7.5/10
Average reader rating: 9/10