The Drums - Portomento Vinyl

$16.42 $16.98

Ever since the success of their first single "Let's Go Surfing," the Drums have spent equal amounts of time tracing that song's sound and distancing themselves from it. They continue to do so on Portamento, beginning their second album with a pair of jaunty kiss-offs to religion and exes. "Book of Revelation" is the album's first and catchiest track, offering a decidedly secular take on living for the moment; "Days," meanwhile, follows in the footsteps of the band's idol Morrissey with lyrics that are so archly self-pitying that they become funny. Indeed, many of Portamento's songs are kind of miserable -- or at least they would be, if these knowing, glum lyrics weren't paired with na?ve melodies and tempos that are too brisk to be mopey. It's hard not to read the Drums' downbeat outlook as a response to Adam Kessler's departure from the band (during their first U.S. tour, no less), and Portamento's sound reflects that change as well. The band's overt '50s and '60s pop worship is largely sublimated in favor of post-punk and synth pop, with the notable exception of "What You Were," a jangly number with a sax solo that recalls both '50s rock and the post-punk and new wave acts that resurrected that sound the first time around. At first, Portamento seems more cohesive than The Drums was, but the album's second half wanders off in several directions. The strangest is "Searching for Heaven," which begins with a symphonic synth intro that seems cribbed from Switched on Bach, then segues into a searching, heartfelt melody that stands in sharp contrast to "Book of Revelation"'s confident atheism. ~ Heather Phares

  • Format: Vinyl
  • Genre: Pop