Weekend

Jinx

Written by: TL on 05/10/2013 20:08:38

Back in 2011, people were complaining about the lack of rock at Roskilde Festival's line-up (as they do every year) and that year, Roskilde's response included booking bands like Beach House and Weekend - both line-up additions that I were initially skeptical of myself, yet Weekend at least managed to impress me with a live-show that was both dynamic and loud as hell, enough so to make me note them as a band I should probably cover, so when I recently learned that they had put out a sophomore LP named "Jinx" in July, I scrambled to add it to my rotation.

Compared to the similarly black and white debut "Sports", "Jinx" sees the Vancouver trio take a very similar approach to the composition of their noisy, lo-fi shoegaze, which tends to move over fast beats and conventional strucutres. Yet the array of pedals that the band relies much upon for effect, has definitely been retooled for "Jinx": Where "Sports" buzzed and roared like an angle grinder, both on its guitars and vocals, "Jinx" rather floats and echoes like a bigger, more pristine album, and the while noisier nuances are still there, they are clearly pushed to the back of the soundscape.

The result is comparable to The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, only less poppy and more introverted and nocturnal, like a cross between The Cure and The Raveonettes. It's not too cool to be catchy, or at least as catchy as can be within the band's sharply defined aesthetic, with opener "Mirror" already opting to catch on simply by the repetitive line "I feel sick, sick, sick, sick, in my heart" and the later "Adelaide" thriving off a nice back and forth between a simple and recognisable vocal melody and an equally characteristic guitar riff that is one of the things that bring The Cure to mind the most.

It's a catchiness that's enforced mostly via repetition and tight formula though, as the drawn out vocals sound like they're both coming from far away and like they're being sung to someone else than you - Like you're standing at a harbour at night, looking at somebody at the end of a pier who's singing to someone on the other side of the sea. It's a dreamy quality that permeates the whole record, and underlines that Weekend seem more like soundscapers than songwriters, and that your liking of them is probably going to be highly subjective, based on whether you feel immersed in their universe or not.

Speaking for myself, I think "Jinx" is pretty cool, and I recognise that the band does enough to sound like an identity apart from any of the contemporaries that I know of, but at the same time I only really connect with two or three tracks, feeling like the rest of the album blurs together into what I'd merely characterise as atmospheric background music. I've preferred it when bands like Foals or The Maccabees have explored similar sounds on recent albums, making it feel like there were more elements reaching out for the listener in each song, but if like bands more that play hard to get, then "Jinx" could be a solid pick up for you.

Download: Mirror, Adelaide, July
For The Fans Of: The Cure, The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, The Raveonettes, Pity Sex
Listen: facebook.com/weekendtheband

Release Date 02.07.2013
Slumberland Records

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