Ludlow Lions

No Stories

Written by: DR on 18/06/2010 18:57:59

I'm going to get this review off to a roaring (pun intended) start by declaring I can't actually think of a decent introduction for Brooklyn, New York's Ludlow Lions that doesn't seem like anything other than a bumbling and not-so-subtle attempt to give you the backstory of this quintet and their debut album "No Stories". Actually, that was pretty much what I was hoping to avoid. Never mind...

Ludlow Lions play a style of indie rock that wouldn't be out of place in the 90s, particularly as they've quite clearly been influenced by music from that era; The Pixies and Guided by Voices are the bands quoted in their bio, and although my experience of which is fairly limited, I can't help draw comparisons to Foo Fighters' eponymous debut, with added pop-y tendencies. For the most part, it's fairly lo-fi, simple yet structured rock with occasional guitar distortion. "Keyboard Teeth" allows Brendan Coon to explore his impressive vocal range from "oohs" to "Girl with the keyboard teeth / I want to kiss you and taste all your melody". Unusual lyrics are another feature of "No Stories"; "You can lie / but the buildings are people, too" from "We're So Proud of Doom", and then there's "New Cold War" which is literally Coon singing about he felt safer whilst the Cold War was happening. "My Compass", beginning with warm acoustics that rise into a brief session of some of the heaviest stuff the album has to offer, before melting back down into its original acoustic warmth for the finish. It's a change of pace towards the end of the album from the generally catchy indie that precedes it, though the same could be said for the jangle-y "Weight of Sound" (despite it's name, it's not at all heavy), and the almost post-rock-ish build-up in the closer "It's A Personal" that blindsides you in the finish with a wall of fuzzy feedback.

"No Stories" is not an emotional rollercoaster or a chance for songwriter Coon to confess his great personal pains; and most will likely consider it a throwback to 90s alternative with a modern twist, but therein lies the attraction. Because it's a relatively simple and easy-going listen, it's not difficult to get into its swing of things, and because there is that all important modern twist, it keeps from sounded totally dated. Moreover, they're allowing you to take it for free, so what do you have to lose?


Download: Keyboard Teeth, We're So Proud of Doom, My Compass
For The Fans of: The Pixies, Guided by Voices, other 90s alternative
Listen: Myspace

Release Date 16.03.2010

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