Japandroids’ Celebration Rock is bookended with the banging sounds of fireworks, awfully appropriate for this 8-song, 35-minute explosion of rock ‘n’ roll.
Youthful in energy, but mature in execution. Brash, but polished. The Vancouver-based guitar and drum duo, Brian King and David Prowse released their sophomore album in early June and have critics and listeners falling in love. The garage rock band’s first effort, 2009’s Post-Nothing, also met critical acclaim and blog buzz, but prior to its release King and Prowse almost called it quits. Thank god they didn’t.
Critics across the board praise Japandroids’ infectious live performance; “energetic” is a gross understatement. Village Voiceblogger Nick Murray admits to getting sucked in at a gig: “You’ll have to excuse my paraphrase, because as the chords that begin ‘Younger Us’ rang out, I ditched the transcription, stuffed my notebook into my pants, and pushed my way to the front of the venue. Sorry.” Bad news: y’all just missed Japandroids’ sold-out show at The Rock & Roll Hotel on June 30.
The record’s single “The House That Heaven Built” has been declared the indie song of the summer by Stereogum voters, and with good reason. It’s hard to listen to the robust track, with lyrics like “And if they try to slow me down / I’ll tell ‘em all to go to hell / Oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh-oh!” and not want to shout along out your open car window, cruising on a warm night.
It’s that kind of youthful, empowered attitude that pulses through the earnest Celebration Rock. For all its hard riffs, driving drums and shouted lyrics, this record is far from angry — more of a celebration, if you will, of the days of less responsibility.
To get your hands on an autographed copy of this summer’s most explosive record — musically and critically — comment with the album that reminds you of the summers of yesteryear.
I can’t think of my high school summer vacation days without hearing Taking Back Sunday’s Tell All Your Friends. Growing up on Long Island, where the emo-pop-punk band is from, it might as well have been required listening.
Please remember, only those of you with mailing addresses in the continental US and Canada can enter! The winner will be chosen a week from today, 7/17.