Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Review: Two Door Cinema Club - Beacon

 Some bands are overrated, while other bands are so stupidly overrated that it gets them to places that they seriously don't deserve. This is no clearer than it is when examining the staggering highs that Northern Irish trio Two Door Cinema Club since releasing their overtly average debut Tourist History in 2010. They were given the Choice Music Prize for best Irish album, played on the main stage at various festivals from Oxygen to Reading and Leeds to Lollapalooza and obviously, the most unnoticeable act of recent times has been frontman Alex Trimble taking part in the London 2012 Olympics opening ceremony, performing Caliban's Dream, a song written for the games by Rick Smith of Underworld. So, in a world where sub-par indie rock bands seem to get all the mainstream respect and attention, Two Door Cinema Club come trudging back with heir second full length Beacon, an album that is likely to make them even bigger than ever because this world is unfair.

 So, if you haven't worked out by now, I really don't like Two Door Cinema Club based on what was heard on Tourist History and Beacon shows no attempt whatsoever to make any kind of step up into a more respectable effort of songwriting or performing. Maybe, I'm being selfish and opinionated to suggest that they were never respectable in the first place, but throughout this album the range of songs feel crafted so that any song could become a big radio friendly indie hit at any second that will only be of attraction to the swarms of young people that like setting trends that get stapled into our popular culture. And just like any band that music critics love to hate, it proves itself to be a winning formula.

 It means that the music being celebrated is a selection of near unrecognizable indie rock songs that cower at the idea of going over the five minute mark and instead give basic song patterns delivered in the form of bland meshes of of synthesizers and lightly strummed guitars, which feel lost within each other as a result of the production, while Trimble's vocals are the main thing relied on for each song, which even though he can perform to thousands and thousands of enthusiastic viewers in an Olympic stadium, display little strength across the album.

 The main thing you learn while listening to the likes of Next Year and Someday when compared to the sporadic moments of energy delivered through Wake Up and Pyramid is that what Beacon mainly has on offer is delicately played indie rock that shouldn't be played delicately. When you compare this entire album to the recent efforts of fellow Irish alt rockers General Fiasco and their debut full length Unfaithfully Yours, an album that also sees a selection of big-hitting indie rock songs that actually sound like they have a pair of balls attached to them, you realise that Two Door Cinema Club simply appear as an utterly weak band who bring songs to the indie table that don't make you feel anything like so many of their other peers manage, that understandably makes rock music look weak in the mainstream.

 With the exception of the odd hook and odder array of classy guitar playing, it's difficult to understand why Two Door Cinema Club are such a celebrated band and brings fear once more to the idea that generic songwriting done with radio-play in mind actually manages to bring in fans and money. The overall performance of Beacon serves as a disheartening sight that the main form of alternative rock that the mainstream celebrates is so watered down, devoid of any sort of passion and energy and are simply dull. At least for the time being I don't have to look at any other bands that have gained an undeserved popularity with songs that show little signs of life, little signs of care and are on the whole completely du- OH GOD! THE VACCINES HAVE A NEW ALBUM OUT AS WELL???

Two Door Cinema Club's Beacon is out now via Glassnote Records. The band will tour the UK throughout September and will perform at Bestival at Robin Hill Adventure Park, Newport from 6th-9th September.

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