So what’s in a name anyway? Well, if you were to judge England’s newest, most promising export, The DumDums, by their name as well as their goofy album cover shot, there is a high probability that you would pass their record by without giving it a second thought. After all, what kind of a name is The DumDums? And the music? It must be completely silly, bordering on ridiculous. Right?
This power-pop trio from Kent, as well as their sparkling debut album, It Goes Without Saying, has made serious waves in Britain. And with two UK Top 20 singles in “Everything” and “Can’t Get You Out of My Thoughts” under their belts, The DumDums are poised reel in American audiences with their unique brand of searing power pop. While the album’s first two tracks might bear a slight resemblance to the post-punk spunk of Green Day and Blink 182, pigeonholing these guys as a post-punk outfit would be completely missing the mark.
The music is high-energy guitar pop of the highest order. It Goes Without Saying is laden with catchy guitar riffs at every turn, uplifting melodies and excellent harmonies that mesh perfectly with vocalist/guitarist Josh Doyle’s witty, tongue-in-cheek lyrics. And the songs? Every song (notice I said every song) is not only radio-friendly, but radio-worthy. From soaring, crunchy numbers like, “The Kind of Day I’ve Had”, “Caught Me in a Trap”, “You Knock Me Off My Feet” and “You Do Something to Me” to the David Mead-ish lounge number “Lonely Hearts Company”, this record simply never lets up for a moment. Then there are brilliant acoustic numbers as well, like the boy/girl ode “Army of Two”, the mesmerizing “Until My Ship Comes In” and the hypnotic, untitled, hidden track, that seems tailor made for Radiohead’s Thom Yorke.
It Goes Without Saying is a monster debut effort and any critic who would consider panning it either didn’t listen to it or just doesn’t get it. Even if you’re not a fan of power pop music, you can’t help but to be lured in by The DumDums unique pop prowess. The uplifting and optimistic spirit of the album makes it impossible to dislike or to even find fault. It would be like someone harboring animosity against the great Jimmy Stewart. It just isn’t possible.
// Notes from the Road
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