Posted by: Ryan Allen on February 28, 2008 at 10:00 am
Born Ruffians, Red, Yellow and Blue (Warp Records, 2008)
In the wake of Vampire Weekend’s blog-hurdle into the mainstream, every band with a jittery and clean take on hyperactive post-punk will be compared to the boys in Benetton. Such might be the plight of Born Ruffians, a like-minded crew of anxious crickets chirping with clear-as-day guitars, polyrhythmic arrangements, and a penchant for random bursts of vocal hysterics. (We’re not sure if they give a fuck about an oxford comma or not.) Still, let’s be real. Is that allowed? VW may appear to have been built in a day (or was it a weekend?), but this type of indie rock has been brewing for a minute. Anybody remember Teenbeat Records? Unrest? Air Miami? Eggs? Tuscadero? Well, if you do, Born Ruffians might just be up your alley, as they tap that vein of indie pop demigods who once ruled summer pop fests and DIY mailing lists.
It’s hard to deny the immediacy of songs such as “Hummingbird,” “Foxes Mate for Life,” and “In A Mirror,” as they gleefully bounce the wide-open pop textures of Buddy Holly over a math-minded rhythm section. Born Ruffians also smartly slow things down just as the pace starts to get unrelenting. This is Teenbeat-style indie pop — joyous, carefree, mildly warped and youthful as fuck. — Ryan Allen
[tags]Born Ruffians, Red, Yellow, and Blue, Vampire Weekend, Teenbeat, Unrest, Tuscadero[/tags]