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Let It Beep

Royal Bangs

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Album Review

For their second album, the Royal Bangs are back on Patrick Carney's Audio Eagle label, and their sound is, if anything, even more insane than it was the first time around. The band's basic modus operandi is set out on "War Bells," the album's opening track: it's trashily electro-infused guitar rock, with (ironically?) intense, clenched-throat vocals and (definitely ironic) Ronettes-style handclaps. "Poison Control" opens with a lick lifted directly from Gang of Four, but then slides slyly into a brilliantly poppy chord progression. Lead singer and keyboardist Ryan Schaefer sounds a bit like he's trying to channel Bono on this song, a tendency that creeps in elsewhere from time to time but doesn't generally become strong enough to distract. What does start to grate after a while is the general messiness and occasional claustrophobia of the band's overall sound, but that may be a conscious production decision based on the high likelihood that these songs will be listened to almost exclusively as compressed MP3s. With that in mind, the grungy funk and world percussion bedlam of "My Car Is Haunted" and the queasy guitar sound on "Brainbow" both make a little more sense, and the startlingly pretty "Waking Up Weird" is even more startling.

Biography

Formed: 2005 in Knoxville, TN

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Indie rock trio the Royal Bangs make rambunctious experimental rock with a bent toward '90s noise rock. Formed in Knoxville, Tennessee in 2005, the Royal Bangs feature former high-school friends singer/multi-instrumentalist Ryan Schaefer and drummer Chris Rusk as well as guitarist Sam Stratton. The band posted its music online and eventually caught the ear of the Black Keys' Patrick Carney, who signed them to his Audio Eagle Records label and released their debut, We Breed Champions, in 2008. The...
Full bio
Let It Beep, Royal Bangs
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  • £7.99
  • Genres: Alternative, Music, Indie Rock, Rock, Adult Alternative
  • Released: 01 January 2009
  • Parental Advisory

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