Sunday, March 21, 2010
The Whigs Blow Through The Labels
Mimicking the ever-expanding 'net, musical labels (not record labels) also promulgate at a bunny-rate forcing musicians to quickly declare their party. These labels, a blunt instrument wielded by critics and musicians alike, now mean little more than a simple column on your iTunes spreadsheet.
Indie rock, Americana, college rock, alternative, freak folk, electronic, arena rock - these labels can all apply to the Athens, Georgia trio and AF favorites, The Whigs. But none of them fully apply. The Whigs blow through these labels.
In their latest effort, In The Dark, The Whigs simply rock.
These labels are just adjectives that frontman Parker Gispert uses to create its impressive wall of guitar and bass. Although Gispert's vocals and lyrics provide the heft of The Whig's appeal, it is the driving rhythm section of Julian Dorio and Timothy Deaux that allow the band to see the world.
Written while supporting the Kings of Leon on tour, the influence of the Kings can be felt throughout the album along with nods to other indie heros My Morning Jacket, The Strokes and Fleet Foxes and HOFers REM and U2. However, make no mistake, there is something interesting here - something more than just another college band.
This album won't set the boys up to those other arena headliners, but it takes them several steps closer that acclaim.