Quick Before it Melts

Stand my ground

October 23, 2012  |  Published in QBiM SPiNS

The writing was on the wall from the get-go: partnering with Björk’s producer, Damian Taylor, touring with Robyn, and the synth heavy, self-empowering anthem “I’m Just Me” all pointed to Diamond Rings‘ sophomore LP being an exercise in synth-pop perfectionism.  Any one holding out for The D’Urbervilles reunion would have to wait; John O (nee O’Regan) has to conquer the pop world first.

There’s  a lot more meet on the bones of Free Dimensional than there was on its predecessor, Special Affections.  These 10 tracks have been fleshed out with deeper bass, flashier synths, and bigger production values that do away with the fumbling-in-the-bedroom sound of the first record.  The quirkiness of that album is also gone, replaced by a swaggering confidence and certainty.  “Runaway Love” is one of the album’s standouts, unafraid to reference John O’s past as an indie guitar band front man while embracing his glitzy side.  The aforementioned “I’m Just Me” still packs a solid punch all these months later and should earn Diamond Rings a Juno nod in the dance song category for sure.

Free Dimensional isn’t the perfect collection of pop that it could be, though.  It’s spotty as far as songwriting goes, showing a disparate divide between John O’s intuitive sense of melody and some unremarkable track choices.  I keep seeing Depeche Mode referenced in articles about this record and I think people are getting their 80s Vince Clarke synth-pop signals crossed, because Free Dimensional has more in common with Erasure’s The Innocents than it does Black Celebration.  Personally, I think Diamond Rings would benefit from more Martin Gore (who would be an excellent choice to produce album #3–just putting it out there, John), from a darker edge, a deeper soul, that would add a whole new dimension to Diamond Rings’ growing repertoire.

Free Dimensional is released today, October 23, 2012 on Secret City Records.

CBC Music: Diamond Rings
Facebook: Diamond Rings
Twitter: Diamond Rings

Tags:

Comments are closed.






RECENT REVIEWS >>

  • RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> THE EMPTINESS >> Sadie, Hawaii RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> THE EMPTINESS >> Sadie, Hawaii
  • FROG EYES >> Pickpocket's Locket FROG EYES >> Pickpocket's Locket
  • KALLE MATTSON >> Avalanche KALLE MATTSON >> Avalanche
  • RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> DESTROYER • Kaputt RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> DESTROYER • Kaputt
  • THE AUTUMN STONES • Escapists THE AUTUMN STONES • Escapists
  • CARLY RAE JEPSEN • Emotion CARLY RAE JEPSEN • Emotion
  • RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> RAE SPOON • My Prairie Home RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> RAE SPOON • My Prairie Home
  • TEEN DAZE • Morning World TEEN DAZE • Morning World
  • MAC DEMARCO • Another One MAC DEMARCO • Another One
  • RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> EVENING HYMNS • Spectral Dusk RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> EVENING HYMNS • Spectral Dusk


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT >>

  • LIBRARY VOICES >> "Oh Donna" LIBRARY VOICES >> "Oh Donna"
  • LOBBY >> "Through a Veil" LOBBY >> "Through a Veil"
  • THE DEARS >> Here's to the Death of All the Romance THE DEARS >> Here's to the Death of All the Romance
  • QUIET PARADE >> "We Were Here" QUIET PARADE >> "We Were Here"
  • NO ALOHA • "100 Watts of What's Up" and "Feelies" NO ALOHA • "100 Watts of What's Up" and "Feelies"
  • TOUI MANIKHOUTH • "Low Tide" TOUI MANIKHOUTH • "Low Tide"
  • NIGEL IRWIN NIGEL IRWIN
  • PREMiERE >> CENTURY THIEF • Pillar PREMiERE >> CENTURY THIEF • Pillar
     


GET DOMINIONATEDdeux >>

  • DOMINIONATEDdeux-MED DOMINIONATEDdeux-MED






QUICK BEFORE IT MELTS NEWSLETTER
(Don't worry, we don't send out a lot.)




  • 08/28/15 >> YLANGYLANG, CAMPER, DESTROYER, HSY 08/28/15 >> YLANGYLANG, CAMPER, DESTROYER, HSY


© 2015 Quick Before It Melts

  • RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> QBiM Q+A: YOUNG GALAXY RE-DiSCOVERiNG >> QBiM Q+A: YOUNG GALAXY
  • The LABEL MAKERS: HAND DRAWN DRACULA The LABEL MAKERS: HAND DRAWN DRACULA