Hrm. There’s a great big sticker on the cover of Static of the Gods’ debut album Cycles Follow Signs that says it’s for fans of the Arcade Fire, the Cardigans, Rilo Kiley, and Pretty Girls Make Graves. You know, I’m just not hearing it. It’s not awful, but it certainly doesn’t carry with it the ambitions of any of those bands. I mean, the Arcade Fire? Is it because they use synthesizers every once in a while? What Static of the Gods is is a fairly run-of-the-mill power pop band with a vocalist that occasionally evokes Gwen Stefani, but is more comfortable mimicking post-Matrix Liz Phair. Some of the songs are fun little ditties with nifty, winding melodies and pleasantly distorted guitars—“Eighty-Eights” is like Del Amitri except, um, girly, and “City Is Closed” might be the lost Fountains of Wayne/Juliana Hatfield collabo that never happened—but mostly, it’s pleasant, ignorable, forgettable power pop. Static of the Gods is tight enough a band that I hope they don’t break up, but Cycles Follow Signs works far better as a statement of potential than any sort of current achievement.
// Notes from the Road
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