The Drums: Portamento

I am a bit late with my review to the new album Portamento by Brooklyn ‘indiepop meets post-punk’-band The Drums but I just forgot it. They name bands such as Joy Division or Orange Juice as their influences and the sound has the 80’s like post-punk feeling at it. Praised by magazines such as NME or Pitchfork as the ‘next big thing’ in Indie the real big success failed to appear. Although it ranged silver in the UK and peaked in several countries and I also liked their debut.

Portamento is the third physical release of them and the second long-play. It came out on Island Record September 2 in the UK. There was a previously released video of What You Here and single called Money. I really liked these two teasers and so I looked forward to listen to the new record. It starts budding with typical Drums-pace and that ‘sandy beach feeling’-rock’ they already showed on their very first EP Summertime. What I recognized is that they played more post-punk on Portamento. The two singles What You Here and Money and also the fifth track on the album Hard To Love affords a travel back to New Order’s Power, Corruption and Lies. I especially loved the awesome organ on Hard To Love. I had to laugh at Searching For Heaven because I didn’t know why that track made it to Portamento, it really did not fit to the other songs. Anyway, Please Don’t Leave Me and If He Likes It Let Him Do It were better but in my opinion this album lacks of highlights and the best songs are the two which were already released as singles and I also liked Days and Hard To Love. But all in all the songs just all sounded too much like the other songs on the album and what they already released in earlier records. You somehow drift away at half and don’t really listen anymore. There is simply too less outstanding stuff on Portamento except the few I mentioned. But I gave it a chance and listened it until the end and have to say the last two tracks turned out not as bad as I expected the end of an album I already gave up on.

So as I already said if you heard the singles there are just a few songs left to be excited to at Portamento. If you are new to the Drums give the older record a spin before you dare at this, you won’t be disappointed. As a confirmed Drums-listener I advise to listen to the first four or five songs and then skip to the last two tracks or you also choose one of the older records. At least that’s what I’d do.

  • 5.8/10

(Get Portamento here)

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