This album reaches its peak at track 2, ‘Young Love’, with it’s light happiness, sparky rhythm and zesty lyrics that the rest of the album doesn’t even come close to.
The CD soon descends into the same hum-drum rock that has been spurting out everywhere for decades. However Twenty One does possess one element that keeps your fingers away from the stop button; at least these dudes run a tight ship with respect to instrumental balance and vocal co-ordination, it’s really the lack of ideas that sinks the ship in the end, regardless of how tight it is.
Perhaps it would be fair to say that the name of track 3, Half In Love With Elizabeth, wraps up the album, as admittedly I ended up half listening to some of the more half-hearted tracks.
Flakes is a flat emulation of Modest Mouse syncopation and there are echoes of Talking Heads and Jack White vocals throughout but it is unconvincing and your fingers start twitching towards that stop button, especially when the violin begins in Umbrellahead.
Many of the tracks exhibit the same rhythm and the repetitive lyrics that cause the songs to merge into one long windy 50-minute road. It’s not fiery but it can keep your head nodding along to the riff…or nodding off in the final 12 minute track.