Ahead of the launch of their North American and European tour, ‘90s alt rock veterans The Dandy Warhols have been teasing fans with singles off their new album Distortland, which just dropped April 8.
The band, who I’ll see this Tuesday in New York City on the second stop of their two-month whirlwind of a tour, brings a more mellow, hypnotic sound to each of the latest releases. These tracks feel like much deeper cuts, relying on steady rhythms and entrancing vocals, rather than blaring guitars and smashing cymbals.
Dandy Warhols Tone it Down a Notch
Founding member and lead singer Courtney Taylor-Taylor’s mesmerizing voice is the focal point of the band’s latest release, “Catcher In The Rye,” a song that feels like the soundtrack to a hero’s journey (perhaps Holden Caulfield’s…just a guess).
Taylor-Taylor’s layered vocals chant, “Dreamer / Every little place that you go / I’m with you,” while the listener walks along a thumping bass line. Singing in the second person, Taylor-Taylor seemed to be speaking directly to me and I found myself nodding along.
The band’s earlier release, “STYGGO” has a similar feel to it. The song never really explodes with grungy guitars or sing-songy vocals, but the consistent drum beat, repetitive guitar riff and Taylor-Taylor’s whisper-sung “doo-doo-doo’s” will have the listener in a trance.
Their third release, “You Are Killing Me” has a more typical Dandy Warhols sound but still stays relatively tame. A heavily distorted guitar chugs along each verse to create a lo-fi garage band feel while Taylor-Taylor’s voice remains tranquil throughout the song.
Though The Dandy Warhols seem to have tamed a little bit, I loved the subdued sounds of the Distortland releases and I can’t wait to see how they translate to the live stage on Tuesday. Stay tuned.