Few albums deserve the categorization “boring” like Feeding People’s unfortunate Island Universe. Within the context of Japandroids, Metz and 12 months of quality releases from the broad and increasingly burgeoning garage and noise rock genres, Feeding People’s full-length debut album tires. Not only is it an exercise in mimicry, juxtaposed with quiet moments of dull and acoustic droning, but each strum of a distorted and haphazardly-tuned guitar sounds lazy. The drums display a linear dependence on sloppy rhythms that neither add to, nor syncopate with, the band’s instrumentals and the bass is often too prevalent for the style of brash, disheveled and psychedelic rock Feeding People attempt to portray.
If one redeeming quality could be found on Island Universe, it’s in the confident and bellowing voice of singer Jessie Jones, redolent of a young Karen O if such comparisons didn’t elevate Feeding People to the seminal Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Aside from Jones’s lively and far-reaching vocals, Island Universe drags and quickly reverts to an unshakable monotony past its third track. To their credit, and possibly hinging on a great untapped talent, Feeding People certainly make their repetitiveness sound inspired. Jones’s vocal performance, though hollow, retains an honest and raw feel – it truly sounds as if she’s giving it her all. Regrettably, such staging is not enough the carry the record past mediocrity. Clocking in at just over 40 minutes, Island Universe is about 25 minutes too long and would have better served as a short EP, or an abandoned pile of demos.