Lucius - Wildewoman: OK, We're Getting a Little Homogenous Here
After reviewing a number of new NYC bands this week and hearing similar sounds from all of them, I’m a little fed up. I can see all of these people in Brooklyn in outrageous outfits sitting on rooftop decks with beach balls as chairs and listening to these on their Beats by Dre Pills. It’s getting out of hand.
Lucius’ new album, Wildewoman, is no exception to this trend. Lashings of Rockabilly and Do-Wop abound, and pretty much every track sounds like it could be on an iphone S commercial or the score for Girls; in fact, I can already picture Lena Dunham dramatically running away from that creepy pseudo-boyfriend’s loft in her coolots after accidentally boning him again.
There might have been something remarkable about this album in 2004 when Le Tigre and New Young Pony Club first started to pop their heads out of the wreckage of the 90s indie scene, but in 2013, it seems like Lucius’ first album was specifically designed for Subaru ads, just like Souljah Boy was accused of making his beats for the ringtone market. It smacks of disingenuousness. I think we’ve had our fill of these bands, and the colorful hipster parade float they rode in on.
I tend to be suspicious whenever Rolling Stone picks up on something as being new and hot, and this is no exception. Rolling Stone featured Lucius’ first album when it was first announced on October 6, so the ipod and Old Navy deals are just around the corner, I’m sure.
It’s not that Wildewoman is bad, necessarily, it’s just not unique. The ubiquitous Country/Rockabilly tone is present in Jess Wolfe and Holly Laesig’s vocals, Andrew Burri’s guitar, and even Dan Molad’s percussion. The title track is so rockabilly that it would be great trail-riding music, as long as you’re wearing pink wayfarers and paint-splattered converse and riding the horse to be ironic.
The video for “Wildewoman,” predictably, features the two vocalists dressed alike in Sherells-style 50s garb, and is done in black and white. The only surprise is the drum machine Molad uses to create the hop-along-little-doggy percussion feel to the song. Judge for yourself:
Call me crotchety if you will, but Wildewoman, though it contains solid, on-key vocals, great two-part harmonies, and interesting percussion, still lacks any kind of unique style or artistic passion that could back up their solid commercial technique. Even the album art seems manufactured: bright hipster colors, check. Hardly vague blowjob reference using an ice cream cone, check. I’m sure they’ll be on talk shows within the week, and they’ll be playing Coachella in April, and my friends will stare at me in disbelief as I tear them a new one when they come on the radio at a bar.
There will always be a market for soulless poprock, but you won’t find it in this lady. It’s not new or original enough, it tries too hard to be weird, and I can smell the ipod on the breath of the girl licking the pastel ice cream cone.
You may or may not agree, and clips can be found on Amazon here. Comment and tell me to go suck a frozen novelty if you will, but I’m just too tired for more manufactured NYC hipster rockabilly.