Dead Rabbits – The Ticket That Exploded (Fuzz Club Records)
Dead Rabbits take on the current wave of new psychedelia makes for an album that suggests a bright future. Louder Than War’s Steven Fanning gives it a spin.
The long droning chords that usher in Dead Rabbits’ debut album are quite a la mode. There’s been a burst of psychedelia pushing through of late, the likes of the feted Temples, Hookworms and Tame Impala have enjoyed considerable success drawing from the styles of yesteryear to create an exciting new wave, which has worked to really freshen guitar music up. And let’s be honest, in the post-Strokes era of the vacuous indie band (and I include the Strokes here), we’ve really needed it.
Those aforementioned chords lay the foundations for the languorous groove of ‘Heavenly Way’ and go some way towards setting the tone for the remainder of the album, which veers away from its psychedelic beginnings into becoming more akin to the likes of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club throughout ‘Pulling The Trigger’ and ‘It’s All In Her Head’. There’s a resistance to being too up-tempo, the focus lying more in the record’s atmosphere than its impact. ‘MMB’ exemplifies this, the softness of the vocals wrap themselves around gentle distortion and a punchy snare drum to create something which works to envelop rather than engage the listener, its borderline dreamy, that state of mind between sleep and consciousness. In contrast, there are the occasional moments which snap you out of your reverie, such as the spiky ‘Before I’m Too Late’ which harks nicely to the Jesus and Mary Chain.
It’s not all plain sailing though, ‘Never Fail’ bears an uneasy resemblance to the duller moments of Starsailor’s fairly uninspiring career and ‘When I’m Blue’ is just a bit too generic and pedestrian to add much to the album, which sadly peters off a little towards the end. That said, there’s enough on here to suggest a bright future for Dead Rabbits, they have some good ideas and when they work – such as on ‘Heavenly Way’ (see the video above), to which I keep returning – they really work. They’re well worth keeping half an eye on in the future, especially if they can find their own sound rather than following on from others.
All words by Steven Fanning. More work by Steven Fanning on Louder Than War can be found in their author’s archive. Follow Steven on Twitter here.