Japandroids - Art Czars - Singles - Reviews - Soundblab

Japandroids - Art Czars

by Rich Morris Rating:8 Release Date:2010-04-13

Canadian noise-rockers Japandroids' new track 'Art Czars', the first of five Japandroids singles planned for 2010, follows on from their brilliant debut album Post-Nothing, released last year. But whereas the songs on that record were largely concerned with youth, irresponsibility and lust, 'Art Czars' is an altogether darker and angrier affair. "I'm really sorry if you thought this feeling/Was the fire that kept your heart beating/Here's your money back/Here's your punk rock back" singer/guitarist Brian King shouts. Is it a satire of the music industry? A backlash against their fans? It's difficult to say - the title gives away little (though perhaps it's a dig at the amorphous genre of 'art-rock', a label with which they've often been tarred) and Japandroids deliver their ironic wit with a straight face. Either way, it's miles away from singing about getting drunk or shagging girls with wet hair.

It's more polished than anything on Post-Nothing too, suggesting that the band aren't too wedded to the lo-fi aesthetic that made critics swoon over their debut. That said, 'Art Czars' is still a terrifically entertaining song, from the barrage of noise at the start, through the mightily crunching power-chords, to the anthemic chorus, "Do as I say girls/Do as I say boys/Everyone do the rebellion!" It's great stuff, no less so for being delivered with a sneer rather than a smile, and it's proof that Japandroids are one of the more exciting rock bands to have recently come out of North America. Roll on that second album.

Pete Sykes

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