Record of the Week: COPYCATS An Idea Died LP
Listen up, because this one’s great, straight outta Granada in the autonomous region of Andalusia! Super catchy, poppy, guitar-driven garage rock, with unabashed punk ’77 flares and lots of very memorable, well orchestrated hooks and choruses. Their name and the post-modern subtitle concept of “an idea dies…another is born” matches the smart and excited execution of the COPYCATS‘ material, and each song makes me stir in my seat as I think of what might have inspired them: the GUN CLUB, WIRE, the FLESH EATERS, the VIBRATORS, the JAM. There are even moments when the singer sounds like an agitated Mick Jagger (and that’s not necessarily a bad thing, an homage perhaps to the ’60s influence they undeniably have but do not flaunt) though most of the time he carries off a blaze, cheeky attitude akin to Darby Crash, Jay Reatard, or Trent Ruane of the MUMMIES. Don’t let all these poached sonic trinkets mislead you. The songwriting is catchy and not overly complicated (yes, there’s an opening riff that sounds like “London Calling”) but they do a terrific and creative job of mixing their influences into something genuine, grander, and ultimately their own. Some bands end up being bad imitators of their heroes, and then some bands just do actually sound like they fell through a time portal. Socially conscious lyrics in English, great cover artwork and, all in all, a really nice surprise. After about 50 listens it still has me hooked!