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Pitchfork Spears The Soft Pack, Applauds Dum Dum Girls

Tastemaking über-blog Pitchfork reviewed two former San Diego bands today in an unprecedented (though certainly unintentional) nod towards America’s Finest City.

The dark garage-y Dum Dum Girls scored a smart 8.3 and a “Best New Music” tag for their End of Daze EP released via Sub Pop.

Reviewer Lindsay Zoladz called the EP “a confident and comprehensive showcase for everything Dum Dum Girls do well, from luxuriant, moody ballads to driving, melodic guitar pop.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWNa16hDGZ8

To be fair with the whole S.D. band thing, head Dum Dum, Dee Dee Penny, currently lives in New York and the other Girls are doing the L.A. thing.

But so what?

We still remember when Dee Dee sang and banged skins with Grand Ole Party (and her name was a believable Kristen Gundred), even if she may have told SoundDiego at the outset of a 2011 tour: “We’ve never been a San Diego band in that sense, because we didn’t cut our teeth playing hometown shows there. But, obviously, I spent a lot of years in San Diego, and it feels nice to start there.”

Regardless, Zoladz takes the EP’s single, "Lord Knows,” as verification that Dee Dee “is gradually transforming into a masterful rock songwriter and potential real-deal rock star… It taps into the strange sorcery of the greatest rock'n'roll songs, possessed with the power to set the world in slow motion for four commanding minutes.”

She goes on to write: “The chorus of ‘Lord Knows’ is simple, like most of Dee Dee's lyrics: ‘Oh boy/I can't hurt you anymore/Lord knows I hurt my love.’ But the ache in her voice, and the echoing ‘Crimson and Clover’ chord progression she sets it against, causes the song to radiate a melancholy violet-sunset glow.”


Zoladz concludes with this gracious prognosis: “End of Daze is their best release. Much more than a stop-gap between LPs, it's succinct but irrefutable proof that this band's dynamite has a long fuse.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GPvbcOKTOw


Indie rockers The Soft Pack, on the other hand, arose a rather flaccid 6.8 for their sophomore (and reportedly sophomoric) album, Strapped.

OK, so The Soft Pack also traded San Diego for Los Angeles, but - contrary to Dee Dee’s distancing from her humble roots - front man Matt Lamkin lied to David Letterman about the cover of their self-titled 2010 album “just to give the hometown some props.”

The cover photo was actually taken in Venice Beach, which might be significant when you consider that, in regards to Dum Dum Girls, Lamkin once said, “Opposite of us: we live in L.A., say we’re from San Diego; she actually lives in San Diego [Hillcrest, at the time] and says her band is from L.A.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eL9zi5yO00k

Anyhow, here’s what reviewer Aaron Leitko had to say:

“Two years in the making, the group's self-produced follow-up, Strapped, doesn't stray far from the established course, which is surprising given the record's gestation period… Rather than rearranging the component parts of their sound, Strapped finds the Soft Pack pursuing a strategy of sonic evolution via additional instrumentation.”

It must sting a little to be told that a couple years of work come off as “never offensive, but it does feel superfluous."

Leitko explains: “Strapped only really stumbles when the Soft Pack slow down. Lamkin is a fine vocalist, but he doesn't have much dynamic. He's either speak-singing in a calm and casual manner or, probably, busy playing guitar. So when the band drops down in intensity, his delivery gets mushy.”

“The Soft Pack's experimental turns pan out better when they keep their foot on the gas,” Leitko continues, concluding with the frank summation: “Long and lush isn't a bad look for the Soft Pack, so long as they're keeping the beat.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Dre5ksb7QM

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Tastemaking über-blog Pitchfork reviewed two former San Diego bands today in an unprecedented (though certainly unintentional) nod towards America’s Finest City.

The dark garage-y Dum Dum Girls scored a smart 8.3 and a “Best New Music” tag for their End of Daze EP released via Sub Pop.

Reviewer Lindsay Zoladz called the EP “a confident and comprehensive showcase for everything Dum Dum Girls do well, from luxuriant, moody ballads to driving, melodic guitar pop.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eWNa16hDGZ8

To be fair with the whole S.D. band thing, head Dum Dum, Dee Dee Penny, currently lives in New York and the other Girls are doing the L.A. thing.

But so what?

We still remember when Dee Dee sang and banged skins with Grand Ole Party (and her name was a believable Kristen Gundred), even if she may have told SoundDiego at the outset of a 2011 tour: “We’ve never been a San Diego band in that sense, because we didn’t cut our teeth playing hometown shows there. But, obviously, I spent a lot of years in San Diego, and it feels nice to start there.”

Regardless, Zoladz takes the EP’s single, "Lord Knows,” as verification that Dee Dee “is gradually transforming into a masterful rock songwriter and potential real-deal rock star… It taps into the strange sorcery of the greatest rock'n'roll songs, possessed with the power to set the world in slow motion for four commanding minutes.”

She goes on to write: “The chorus of ‘Lord Knows’ is simple, like most of Dee Dee's lyrics: ‘Oh boy/I can't hurt you anymore/Lord knows I hurt my love.’ But the ache in her voice, and the echoing ‘Crimson and Clover’ chord progression she sets it against, causes the song to radiate a melancholy violet-sunset glow.”


Zoladz concludes with this gracious prognosis: “End of Daze is their best release. Much more than a stop-gap between LPs, it's succinct but irrefutable proof that this band's dynamite has a long fuse.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6GPvbcOKTOw


Indie rockers The Soft Pack, on the other hand, arose a rather flaccid 6.8 for their sophomore (and reportedly sophomoric) album, Strapped.

OK, so The Soft Pack also traded San Diego for Los Angeles, but - contrary to Dee Dee’s distancing from her humble roots - front man Matt Lamkin lied to David Letterman about the cover of their self-titled 2010 album “just to give the hometown some props.”

The cover photo was actually taken in Venice Beach, which might be significant when you consider that, in regards to Dum Dum Girls, Lamkin once said, “Opposite of us: we live in L.A., say we’re from San Diego; she actually lives in San Diego [Hillcrest, at the time] and says her band is from L.A.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eL9zi5yO00k

Anyhow, here’s what reviewer Aaron Leitko had to say:

“Two years in the making, the group's self-produced follow-up, Strapped, doesn't stray far from the established course, which is surprising given the record's gestation period… Rather than rearranging the component parts of their sound, Strapped finds the Soft Pack pursuing a strategy of sonic evolution via additional instrumentation.”

It must sting a little to be told that a couple years of work come off as “never offensive, but it does feel superfluous."

Leitko explains: “Strapped only really stumbles when the Soft Pack slow down. Lamkin is a fine vocalist, but he doesn't have much dynamic. He's either speak-singing in a calm and casual manner or, probably, busy playing guitar. So when the band drops down in intensity, his delivery gets mushy.”

“The Soft Pack's experimental turns pan out better when they keep their foot on the gas,” Leitko continues, concluding with the frank summation: “Long and lush isn't a bad look for the Soft Pack, so long as they're keeping the beat.”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Dre5ksb7QM

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