Home > News & Reviews > Declan Mckenna

Declan McKenna - Zeros (Album Review)

Friday, 11 September 2020 Written by Huw Baines

Expect to emerge from a casual listen of Declan McKenna’s ‘Zeros’ with a not-so-casual case of cultural whiplash. Are we listening to a bright new talent with a supremely online rise behind them, or traipsing through London in the mid ‘70s with the dregs of spacey glam rock lapping at our flares? 

One thing that the follow-up to 2017’s ‘What Do You Think About the Car?’ certainly has on its side is a deep appreciation for the sonics of the era it seeks to evoke. McKenna inhabits these songs with a referential sort of daring, drawing attention to the anachronistic treatments of indie-pop-by-numbers songs such as Twice Your Size.

No amount of Bowie-aping stage glitter can mask the callow melodies that undermine his efforts, though. The album’s finest moments—the soaring, intuitive chorus of The Key to Life on Earth or Daniel, You’re Still a Child’s slinky charm offensive—are able to leap over empty Ashes to Ashes guitar lines and sub-Elton John piano hammering through the guile in their hooks and stardust behind their delivery.

But when the standard drops even a little, as on the Beatles-lite of Beautiful Faces or Canterbury Scene-via-Flaming Lips psych-pop of Emily, then McKenna’s personality and canny world-building lyrics are cut adrift among empty genre flourishes. Really, that’s a terrible shame as he has a keen eye for satire and a sharp tongue reserved at different times for xenophobes, frequent fliers and technology as an invasive species.

‘Zeros’ has much to recommend it, from the thrill of seeing a young musician grow in confidence to concept album scope (who exactly is Daniel?), and almost as much work to do to realise its lofty aims. McKenna is here to stay, though, and he might one day bring a level of artistic ambition to chart-ready indie that has of late been the sole preserve of radicals from the worlds of pop and hip hop.

Declan Mckenna Upcoming Tour Dates are as follows:

Fri March 19 2021 - SHEFFIELD O2 Academy Sheffield
Sat March 20 2021 - LIVERPOOL O2 Academy Liverpool
Mon March 22 2021 - OXFORD O2 Academy Oxford
Tue March 23 2021 - BOURNEMOUTH O2 Academy Bournemouth
Wed March 24 2021 - LEICESTER O2 Academy Leicester
Fri March 26 2021 - NORWICH Norwich Nick Rayns LCR UEA
Sat March 27 2021 - CAMBRIDGE Cambridge Junction
Sun March 28 2021 - BRISTOL O2 Academy Bristol
Tue March 30 2021 - CARDIFF Cardiff University Students Union
Thu April 01 2021 - LONDON O2 Academy Brixton
Fri April 02 2021 - LONDON O2 Academy Brixton
Sat April 03 2021 - BIRMINGHAM O2 Academy Birmingham
Mon April 05 2021 - NOTTINGHAM Rock City
Tue April 06 2021 - NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE O2 Academy Newcastle
Thu April 08 2021 - LEEDS O2 Academy Leeds
Fri April 09 2021 - MANCHESTER Albert Hall
Sat April 10 2021 - MANCHESTER Albert Hall
Mon April 12 2021 - GLASGOW SWG3
Tue April 13 2021 - GLASGOW SWG3
Thu April 15 2021 - DUBLIN Olympia Theatre
Fri April 16 2021 - CORK Cyprus Avenue

Click here to compare & buy Declan Mckenna Tickets at Stereoboard.com.

Let Us Know What You Think - Leave A Comment!

Related News

Fri 09 Jul 2021
Declan McKenna Returns With New Song My House
Tue 29 Jun 2021
Declan McKenna Adds Edinburgh Show To Upcoming Zeros Tour
Fri 26 Feb 2021
Declan McKenna Reschedules Zeros Tour To August And September
Thu 14 Jan 2021
Declan McKenna Postpones Upcoming UK And Ireland Zeros Tour
Wed 02 Dec 2020
Declan McKenna Unveils Video For Rapture
< Prev   Next >