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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 9 June 2010
My expectations of this album were admittedly very high after the excellent `Summertime!' EP from last year which at seven tracks was a mini-album in itself.

I thought more tracks from `Summertime!' would be included on this record but only two have made the cut (the excellent `Lets Go Surfing' and `Down By The Water'). How `I Felt Stupid' and `Submarine' didn't make it is a mystery of Lord Lucan proportions but all too often nowadays you've heard half the songs on a band's debut before it comes out so I guess The Drums should be applauded for that. It's just a shame anyone who didn't buy `Summertime!" won't get to hear those songs cos they are both belters.

I have to admit the new tracks (`Me and the Moon', `Skippin Town', `It Will All End In Tears') didn't grab me at first but have rewarded repeated listens now the hooks have revealed themselves. There are more immediate tracks like `Forever and Ever Amen' and `We Tried' but as other reviews have mentioned there is not a huge amount of variety and I do think the quality tails off with the last two tracks. Perhaps that's where `I Felt Stupid' and `Submarine' would have slotted in nicely or any of the remaining tracks on `Summertime!'.

I want to give this record 3.5 stars but Amazon won't let me so it's going to get 3 stars - a solid debut and if you like this band definitely get the `Summertime!' EP - that gets 5 stars !
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on 8 July 2010
What I like about indie music is its general indifference - I think it's supposed to be fun and simple and it's not supposed to care about anything much, so you can listen to it and let the songs make you feel happy or sad or whatever else - that's if they're quality songs anyway. But I think indie music tries too hard now; it's fallen into this paradox where all these bands have begun putting a lot of care into not caring, wearing carefully dirtied jackets and having messy but very obviously styled hair, and some of the time they force a kind of slurred, aimless way of talking that isn't great. The Drums aren't quite guilty of all that. After paying a bit of attention to them I get the feeling that they're actually heading towards the opposite end of the spectrum, in that they're trying to make it seem like they put more effort into their music than they actually do.

Their lead singer, Jonathan Pierce has claimed that the band finds importance in "melody, sincerity and truthfulness", but the album's opening track Best Friend is about the fictional death of fellow band-mate Jacob Pierce : "You're my best friend/ but then you died/ when I was 23 and you were 25". And then there's Let's Go Surfing: "Oh, mama/ I wanna go surfing/ Oh, mama/ I don't care about nothing". Especially since the band are admittedly not surfers, to me those lyrics pretty much encompass the kind of "who the hell cares" attitude I like in my indie music, and for the first half of the album at least that quirkiness keeps up the pace, from Best Friend to Forever and Ever Amen, and the melody is definitely there.

So the album holds some charm, even if that charm contradicts the way the band have talked about their music, and throughout its first half it carries a nice flow; the songs are up-tempo and catchy and they have subtle additions like the high-pitched backing vocals in Forever and Ever Amen's pre-chorus and the flute sound in Book of Stories, and I think subtleties like that can do a lot of make a song. But I keep mentioning the "first half", and that's because from Down by the Water onwards things aren't as good; the songs drop in tempo and there's a little more melancholy there, plus the songs just appear to dip in quality - the rhythm of each track is quite similar, so that starts to grind a bit too. So it seems like it could be two EPs stuck back-to-back, but maybe if they'd mixed the track list around differently it would have been more passable.

I've heard a few people complain about The Drums because "they seem false" or because "they're just trying to be The Smiths", but what has made the most sense to me was someone saying "I like `em. Bit of summer fun". And this album plays up to that, and under that context it's decent, but it could have been better if it's second half didn't bring it down, both in summer cheeriness and general quality. As a result of this there's a chance the album will just fade into obscurity with there being a lot of summertime music to choose from, but going back to what I said nearer the start, I believe the The Drums have some charisma hidden in their attitude towards what they do, so it wouldn't be a waste of time to give this album a listen, but also to keep an eye on them to see if they can put some clever indifference back into indie music, because music's no fun when it's too careful.
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on 5 April 2012
This album is amazing, I listen to it all the time it's just fab, buy it ok you need to have it in your life
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on 25 December 2010
I picked up this album based on the strength of the single 'Let's Go Surfing'. On listening to the album through, i was astounded by how most of the songs seem to sound exactly the same. This isn't a genre thing, as some would argue, i've been a fan of this type of music for years. This band just seems lacking in creativity.

This isn't an abysmal album, but a bit of variety could have made it leap out more.

Download Let's Go Surfing. Leave the rest.
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on 21 October 2010
I actually think this album is more solidly entertaining than their earlier EP, which seems to be contrary to many opinions expressed here. Nice jingly tunes that are very reminiscent of the old C86 era. It doesn't push back any musical boundaries but it certainly provides a nice soundtrack whilst your frying bacon and eggs on a Sunday morning.
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VINE VOICEon 23 June 2010
Think poppy Cure, Smiths, Go Betweens, New Order and Bunnymen. But more plink-plink three note sweet than those bands. The Drums sound much like The Shins would if they did an early eighties indie disco tribute album. We're at track seven ('Down By Water') before the formulaic la-la-la stuff relents. Only 'Down' is a sugary lament with a pained vocal and a keyboard sound dredged up from an old Motors single. So that's not a big win. And then The Shins (sorry, Drums) are back doing the period indie thing. 'I'll Never Drop On My Sword' manages to organise the stock product in a more winning way. But for me one listen 'Cattle & Cane' by The Go Betweens will explain the difference between The Drums and greatness. What steals stars away isn't the sense of overdone revivalism (a good song is a good song, after all.) Too much formula writing and the cupcake sweet finish bit into my enjoyment of the album overall.
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on 9 June 2010
Ah you just have to love the bitter people who can't stand hyped up bands (as seen with the 1 star review).

The Summertime EP is probably a more consistent collection of songs but The Drums full debut is a fine listen. Nothing spectacular but as far as "summer" albums go this is a great listen.

If you hate all things 80s you'll most likely despise this but if you have a few 80s acts in your collection then prepare yourself to be pleasantly surprised. All the singles are tremendous tunes and the rest of the album is far from filler.

I had my mind made up after the SUmmertime EP that this would be an album that would be near the top in my favourites from 2010 and I havent been disappointed.
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on 18 July 2010
This is the best pop album you will hear this year. The Drums have edge - but a curious kind of blunt edge. They definitely have the x-factor, but appear too frail for world domination. So enjoy them while you can. The American Las - they don't sound like them, but will probably end up in the same 'where are hey now?' category. The planet's best-kept secret.
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on 8 December 2011
I really haven't heard an album that made me want to listen to it repeatedly for hours and days on end. It really is one of the best albums I've heard, there isn't a dud track on it. I'd recommend it to everyone, whatever their musical tastes!!!!!!!!!
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on 27 August 2015
great sound by a great band!
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