Reviews in 200 Words

Libraries by The Love Language

In Album on August 5, 2010 at 2:21 pm

It’s startling, dialing into a Utah radio station and hearing these North Carolina favorites. But that’s where The Love Language stand with the release of their second album “Libraries” – on the cusp of Arcade Fire-style stardom. They’re on Merge now, they’re nationwide, and they’re blending 50’s-style sounds with 2010 sensibilities.

These days lo-fi is all the rage, so it’s nice hearing bandleader Stu McLamb polish off the ragged 8-track atmosphere that made the band’s debut so endearing. What remains is a glossy sock hop for these tense, modern times. Imagine the Strokes playing “Earth Angel” with Marty McFly on guitar. It’s sweaty and v-necked and McLamb is apt to jump into the crowd and let the locals belt out his heart-strained lyrics.

The album begins modestly, rising out of a humid wave of feedback. But the party begins in earnest with the Chuck Berry guitar stabs of “Brittany’s Back.” McLamb’s voice climbs and wails and the veins on your own neck pop out by proxy. It’s thrilling stuff as you realize you’re kissing a girl who may one day be your wife. And there’s McLamb – singing and playing like he’s about to disappear.


-Jay Cullis
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