Driveblind- Driveblind (Geffen)

The Arts — By on December 9, 2006 at 2:25 pm

I have a secret. For years, I have been pining to dub some promising new group’s style as “Kilt Rock©.” That’s right- capital K, capital R. Snippets of unheard songs have popped into my head… songs that feature crashing drums, loud guitars, bagpipes, and a certain kind of melancholy that can only come from the British Isles (well, north of London, at least). Oh, how I’ve longed to hear this sound…

Driveblind are six young lads from Scotland by way of L.A. Sadly, like every other rock band I have heard, they are not Kilt Rock©. This is not to say that they suck. In fact, if Travis, Coldplay, or other Radiohead Lite-derived bands are your thing, you may like them quite a bit. Lead vocalist Terry McDermott does a pretty solid Richard Ashcroft (The Verve) impression on “Clearer Now”, the tonight-on-the-WB-worthy “Leave Home (Save Yourself)”, and the gorgeous album-closer “Autumn Red.” David Nicholson adds tasteful touches of organ to the proceedings and the songwriting is stellar. But sadly, all of these strengths foreshadow what makes Driveblind ultimately unrewarding- you feel like you’ve heard all of this before. The album lacks a compelling left turn or a rock song that can move the air. Not as twee as their countrymen Belle & Sebastian, but nowhere near the heaviness of a Deep Purple (for some reason, Driveblind’s group photo reminds me of that “Smoke On The Water” era), it just seems unlikely that some band is going to roll out a few years from now and prompt rock critics or fans to say “Hey… these guys remind me of Driveblind,” and that may be the most stinging criticism of all.

(RATING 1-10): 5

    1 Comment

  • i listen says:

    Well if you want to listen to some fellows who are well worth the listen you should tune into Bell X1. Formerly Jupiter and formerly fronted by Damien Rice, Music in Your Mouth, which is their 2nd? release is a fabulously solid album from the 2nd best band from Ireland (though I’m not necesarily a huge U2 fan).

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