Spun: The Kills

By Jaime Burnet

Midnight Boom is like the incredibly hot guy or girl that you just can’t quite get a read on–it’s coy, a little sexy but with just a hint of guile to it. While the Kills have never been about creating an all-out sonic boom meant to blow their listeners away, this is the closest thing to it.

The Kills have been most famous for their two-person minimalist blues-infused rock sound that still remains a centrepiece on the album. Instead of phoning it in, they try to introduce new elements–like the marching band drumline of lead single “Cheap and Cheerful”–definitely a new indulgence for a band that continues to use a drum machine for most of their songs. While it’s still very much a blues-rock-oriented album, tracks like “Alphabet Pony” feature dark and fuzzy guitars with a drum beat straight from playground clapping games.

The Kills were started as a reaction to the pomp and pretension of big-name bands and their major labels. While Midnight Boom is still very much a Kills album with sharp guitar riffs and V.V. Mosshart’s smoke-filled crooning, this album can only lead to ruin for the act, as they have slowly begun to take part in the things they once hated. Still, Midnight Boom clocks in at a tight 34 minutes with enough good tracks to cover the price of admission–something that still can’t be said for a majority of major-label records.

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