Dum Dum Girls – [EP]

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Some of the best moments are those when it's possible to listen to a new record and get a sense of discovery from it. Sometimes, the urge to shou “Eureka!” is just overpowering because, you finally get it; other people had already been singing this band's praises, but you just never saw the thrill in it that they were getting – until a new release strikes that chord which resonates so well within you that it shakes you right down to your very foundations. That's the sort of feeling I got when I first heard the End Of Daze EP by the Dum Dum Girls. While 2011's Only In Dreams was a fine enough album for the band in that it further developed the Girls' image as one of the best of rock's new breed, the album seemed a little two-dimensional in that it just continually presented one image of the band (always in the same pose) ten times and then lumbered away. That isn't to say it was a bad record (it wasn't bad in the slightest), only that it was a bit limited in what it did. With the End Of Daze EP though, listeners are given some added insight for the Only In Dreams sessions; it proves that there were another four songs which fell by the wayside because the band deemed them to be just a little too different to be included on the LP. They are the unreleased songs which make up the run-time of End Of Daze.

…And some would argue that they're each better than any of the songs which appear on the full-length!

Well, maybe that they were unjustly left off of the LP is reaching a bit, but each of the songs on End Of Daze is definitely worth hearing. Unlike the tracks which did make the cut, the ones on this EP are consistently lighter and less heavy-handed (more Bangles meets Blonde Redhead than Bangles meet The Stooges) than anything on the full length. Here, they reach into directions centered more around artifice and delicacy than hard grinding rock, but the funny thing is that regardless of how much a given listener loved the LP, they'll also have to concede that these songs are pretty wild for the counterpoint they represent too. The chilly, echo-ey oddness of “Mine Tonight” is about as far as one would expect to get from the comfort zone that Only In Dreams identified, but it's still an interesting listen. So too is “Lord Knows,” which seems half-finished because it lifts both the chord progression and vibe from Cowboy Junkies' cover of “Sweet Jane,” and puts new lyrics over top; as if the music was just put in for a placeholder so the band could come back and fill it in properly later. In both of those cases (and both of the others as well) Dum Dum Girls take about as large a step out of their comfort zone as any listener could imagine, but they don't falter or stumble in their experimentations, which makes for a very thought-provoking listen. As good as Only In Dreams was, this EP dilates the scope of possibilities that Dum Dum Girls are capable of and lets listeners' minds start racing; with this EP along with Only In Dreams in mind, listeners will realize that Dum Dum Girls could have anything in store for fans when they return with another album and that's a pretty tantalizing possibility.



The End Of Daze EP is out now. Buy it here on Amazon .

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