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CD of The Week

Week of 7/22/19

    Two Door Cinema Club - False Alarm (Glassnote)

    Many indie-pop bands over the last 10-15 years (i.e. Phoenix, Coldplay) have recently moved toward the retro-electro sound with aplomb. Embracing sounds of new wave/post-punk pioneers like Devo, Talking Heads, and even Naked Eyes, Two Door Cinema Club have steered their ship in a new direction by taking some risks on their fourth album False Alarm. While mostly sticking to their formula of crafting delightfully upbeat, robust indie radio-friendly gems (going back to their brilliant debut Tourist History), some of the more unique tracks on this effort add elements of funk and disco. On a few songs, lead singer Alex Trimble croons along in a groovy falsetto that puts you smack dab in a '70's nightclub if the owners were the lovechild of MGMT and Supertramp.

    Two Door Cinema Club are clearly having fun on False Alarm. When they get a little weird, tunes like the neo-psych track "Break Mix" may have you questioning their motives, but these songs find just the right vibe. At times it's exactly what you wouldn't expect, yet somehow not surprising. Case in point, the rap break from Open Mike Eagle on "Nice To See You" is only jarring for about three seconds, then it sounds like it was meant to be. "Dirty Air" could be a long-lost David Byrne demo while "Satellite" sums up the overall tone with the lyrics "Set the reaction / Ticket to ride / Reckless abandon / Time on your side / Into the future / The water is fine / We're goin' places / You're comin' with us."

    Obvious influences aside (listen to the lyrics from "So Many People" - "I've been so many people / Still, I am one / The one you've never met"), 2DCC have delivered a unique and genuine mix of synth-laden pop-rock jams that will resonate with the steadfast and perk up the ears of the unfamiliar. While some felt their third album, 2016's Gameshow, was a misstep, False Alarm delivers the message that change is good. Welcome the kitsch (check out the colorful cover art), enjoy the ride (more cowbell?), and don't overthink it. You can catch them live at The Fillmore on Sunday, September 15th.
    Review by Dave Lindquist

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