Thursday 27 June 2013

GUMS! - Antipathy

EP review by

GUMS! are a Glaswegian indie collective, so already you will have certain preconceived ideas about what their music sounds like, and to be quite honest you're probably spot on. They're also something of a supergroup. When The Plimptons called it a day earlier this year after 14 years, we ended our review of final album 'The Plimptons Are Dead' by saying it was sad to see them go. Well GUMS! was the destination for two of them, along with members of Orphans and Collar Up. So, yes, the music has that fey indie jangle on some songs, 'Luckless Days' being maybe the best example; native accents are used and lyrics talk of real life in the city they call home. They're following in the footsteps of many that have gone before, certainly, but think of them as current carriers of the torch. They're doing Glaswegian indie as well as anyone else right now.

There are rough, ready and ragged rattles through melodic pop that's frayed around the edges, as evidenced on 'The Willow Cafe' with its catchy melody and driving power. There's a typically miserable song about the events of s drunken night in the city; "...cold and wet.. take out a cigarette, try to light a match in the pouring rain". It's the tale of a ruined night out for 'New Year' that's lightened by the friendship on offer in the chorus which lifts the song. As the name suggests, 'Are You Still Cruel' is hardly a barrel of laughs, but the near doo-wop backing makes up for that. 'Dancing In Your Room' is the kind of hectic punky indie that's been a staple diet of the scene since the early 1980s, and what a fizzing song it is. There's no twist in the tale, as the EP falls into a classic end track with piano and a slightly more reflective feel. It's more tales of real life and real people, but maybe this is the perfect response to all the dreampop and psychedelia that's taking over the indie world. Whichever, it's good that the demise of The Plimptons has a silver lining after all.

GUMS!' website

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