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Two Door Cinema Club - False Alarm (Album Review)

Tuesday, 02 July 2019 Written by Helen Payne

You might remember Two Door Cinema Club from such angular refrains as What You Know and Undercover Martyn, from their debut LP, ‘Tourist History’, or even the earworms Sun and Handshake from the early 2010s. 

But on their fourth album, ‘False Alarm’, a record anticipated in some quarters as a righting of the ship following the disappointment of 2016’s ‘Gameshow’, the Northern Irish trio aren’t out to reproduce the sounds that made their name. Instead, they opt for soulless, modish pop songs fabricated to be the next summer hit. They won’t be.

The first major worry for ‘False Alarm’ is how easy it is to forget. Operating within a very literal take on dream-pop, finishing the LP is like waking up from an hour-long electro and disco-infused nap. There aren’t any melodies, chord progressions or passages that really stand out. At all.

Satellite is the only chorus with bite, but even so, its experimentation with baritone and copycat ‘80s synths sounds worn out and stale. Lead single Talk could stand a comparison with Friendly Fires if its agitated guitars were placed higher in the mix, and Dirty Air is undone by uncomfortably scratchy tones in its pre-chorus.

Another huge issue is the lack of any sort of statement in the lyrics. Every song is made up of disposable filler words with little to no meaning. Talk gives us the unremarkable “I want it all, don't stop givin', I like the way you talk, just do it.” Its futuristic electro follow up, Satisfaction Guaranteed, featuring the Zimbabwean band Mokoomba, has a chorus made up of words seemingly plucked out of a rhyming dictionary at random: “A rising star, a family car, homemade television, under the waves, lemonade, worldwide exhibition.” It’s nonsense fodder.

But the fact remains that if you’re here for some fun, a bit of a boogie and to let your hair down, then ‘False Alarm’ is the right place to be. Despite closer Already Gone ending awkwardly with abrupt silence—yet another statement that doesn’t actually say anything—it’s a record that’s easy to swing through happily without putting much thought towards it. If you were looking for something with a little more edge, though, you’ll see Two Door’s latest effort as a failure. While the trio may never find an evolved sound that’s still “them”, at least we'll always have ‘Tourist History’.

Two Door Cinema Club Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Fri July 26 2019 - GALWAY Festival Big Top
Thu October 03 2019 - CARDIFF Motorpoint Arena Cardiff
Fri October 04 2019 - GLASGOW O2 Academy Glasgow
Sat October 05 2019 - GLASGOW O2 Academy Glasgow
Mon October 07 2019 - MANCHESTER O2 Victoria Warehouse Manchester
Tue October 08 2019 - MANCHESTER O2 Victoria Warehouse Manchester
Thu October 10 2019 - HULL Bonus Arena, Hull
Fri October 11 2019 - LONDON O2
Sun October 13 2019 - PLYMOUTH Plymouth Pavilions
Mon October 14 2019 - DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
Tue October 15 2019 - DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
Wed October 16 2019 - BELFAST Telegraph Building

Click here to compare & buy Two Door Cinema Club Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

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