Once in a while an album will come along that will serve as a reminder of very important concepts. In the case of Girls Names’ second album, the very important reminder is that the words “genre” and “generic” are, linguistically speaking, practically siblings. Their first album, Dead To Me, came at the tail end of two years of C86 revivalism. What? You don’t remember that? You don’t, speaking frankly, really even know what C86 is? Well. I suppose if you’ve never heard The Wedding Present or, for something more recent, the first Pains Of Being Pure At Heart album, you might find The New Life somewhat fresh. Still, though, it boils down to the same sort of thing that turned me off of DIIV’s album last year: it’s really just generic-sounding “indie rock” with some reverb thrown on the guitars to make them pop more in the mix. It wants to be the Cure, it wants to be the Stone Roses, it wants to get under your skin, but it fails miserably on all three counts. I guess if you’re totally sold on jangly proto-alt-rock as a genre then it might be up your alley, but even then you’ll probably find yourself bored after a couple of listens.
FINAL MARK: D