Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Doves : Some Cities : 7.8

I know what you are saying, 7.8 ain’t that bad but damn it the opening line to the review enrages me : " Doves' frontman Jimi Goodwin can't sing. His voice, often derided for its slovenliness and liberality with pitch, lends the Manchester trio's songs a coarseness for which they're left to compensate, or not, with more adventurous instrumentals. "

What???? Who exactly do you think can sing ? Isn’t there a more appropriate place to direct that insult ?

Jimi's specific kind of crooning rasp is so good it should practically be trademarked. Upon my very first listen of " Some Cities" all I could think of was how hauntingly reminiscent his voice was to the master of all that is sad Mark Eitzel… the same Mark Eitzel that Pitchfork loves and has given 9. something on MANY of his releases. What makes a singer great could be cause for endless debate and I know we could all list a million artists we love and whom many might say can’t sing. ( Nancy Sinatra, Wedding Present, Lee Hazlewood, Lou Reed, Tim Kinsella, Mark Arm…..trust me I know this list is ENDLESS ) Sorry but the Doves have never been on my list of questionable but loveable vocal artistry.

Sam’s meandering opinion ping-pongs from paragraph to paragraph often enough that it becomes difficult to follow the proverbial ball. He starts with a jab, makes nice nice in the middle and then ends somewhere in-between. For using clumsy word couples like “mutually exclusive, downright impregnable, and aseptically beatific “ I am left wishing I had a decoder ring to follow this review rather then wondering if I should go ahead and check out the new Doves record.

Honestly, does calling “Some Cities” plucky and resilient inspire you to give it a listen? That sounds more like something Tripper would have said the down and out camper Rudy in the movie Meatballs.

I give this 3 “ It just doesn’t matter ! ”s out of a possible 5 and if you don’t know what that means I think somebody needs to make a quick run to the video store for some sweet 70’s cinema.