Saturday, March 29, 2014

Dum Dum Girls. Too True (2014).

Over the last couple of weeks I've bought every release by Dum Dum Girls.The lo-fi aspect of Dee Dee's earlier work sounds practically experimental in nature.  Without vocals or drums, some of those early tracks could almost be mistaken as something by Christian Fennesz.

The new album by Dum Dum Girls, Too True, is slick, glamorous, and lush, filled with reverberant magic spaces.  More glaze than daze.  

Dum Dum Girls evoke a few things at the same time: I hear Phil Spector, the Ronnettes, 70's punk, and some 80's Indie Pop. Dee Dee prefers the Stones from the Brian Jones era, which I am totally sympathetic with.  I love how Kristin Welchez decided to become a character, which she would call Dee Dee Penny, who plays in an imaginary band called Dum Dum Girls, before she even had a band. 

Anyone who's followed Dum Dum Girls from the beginning is aware of Dee Dee's development from bedroom 4-tracker, to signing to Sub Pop, to fronting a full touring band, to performing on major network TV (Letterman).  You've no doubt loved the dichotomous nature of her work: innocent/gritty, sunny/dark, tuneful/noisy, retro/au courantToo True is a major leap forwards, which might not please her oldest fans, but I appreciate her desire to create something as rich and sophisticated as she did with this album.

Here's a good example of Dum Dum Girls' love of opposing points of view, from the 2010 debut album, I Will Be.  They dance (kind of) on a summery, psychedelic beach.  The video is full of overexposed, pretty pastel colors; but they are dressed as if for a funereal, in black leather and lace:

Here is the title track from the new album.  It's so swoony and alluring (both the video and the song); almost sounding like Cocteau Twins meets The Cure, mixed with some late period Siouxie and the Banshees thrown in for extra enchantment, and there's nothing wrong with that.

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