November 12, 2008

Cold War Kids - Loyalty to Loyalty (2008)

I imagine I'll step on some toes with this one: First off, let it be known, the Cold War Kids' first album, Robbers & Cowards, took a little time to grow on me. At the moment, I thoroughly enjoy some of the swaggering rollicks off that album, such as: "We Used to Vacation," "Hang Me Up to Dry," "Passing the Hat," & "Hospital Beds." I'm on the boat when it comes to these tracks. In contrast, Loyalty to Loyalty, with the dual exceptions of "I've Seen Enough" & "Every Valley Is Not A Lake," is remarkably boring. A quintisential mixed bag of things that work—such as the saloon-style piano at the beginning of "Every Valley Is Not A Lake"—and shortcomings. There's no 'tude to this album, and for me, too many "what-the-fuck-is-this?!?" stretches. The charismatic cockiness that was displayed on the aforementioned piano heavy and bass thumpin' romps is practically nonexistent, leaving just a sullen shell of their waggish debut. This bland sophomore effort leaves a lot to be desired. Does this album have what it takes to grow on me? It's possible, but not likely. For now, its going on the shelf.

Despite my criticism, "I've Seen Enough" cannot be denied! Check it out.