Devin – Romancing
Devin Therriault is hung up on love, apparently. There are so many albums written about relationships and heartbreak, and all that other stuff, that to stand out, an artist really must have something unique to say. Therriault may not be the most original lyricist around, but he relies on his own experiences to write songs that are honest, and unexpectedly humourous in places, though you wouldn’t expect anything else from someone who released a song called ‘Masochist’ as a single. It serves as the album opener, and is a barnstorming slice of energetic rock.
Added to this mischievous streak – and here’s the crucial part – he knows how to write hooks. In this respect, ‘Romancing’ is a hell of a good album. If you’re looking for an album that offers up nothing but earworms, and are content to have songs like ‘New Horrors’ running around in your head all day, then get on this. OK, so: humourous and hook-filled. What else? Ah, but of course. It is rather a lot of fun. Even when Therriault is singing about ‘a heart full of doom’, as he does on ‘In My Solitude’, he sounds like he’s having a good time, in a way. When that can be said about one of the most introspective songs on the album, then you know you’re on to a winner.
He even makes a song called ‘I Died’ sound completely irresistible. Making full use of his soulful voice, not to mention some call-and-response vocals, he delivers what is arguably the album highlight, both lyrically and musically. ‘We’ve both got hearts, and we’ve both got knives / But what’s the fun in cutting each other open all night?’ is just one of the stand-out lines from that song.
There are a few mid-tempo moments scattered throughout the album, but Therriault is at his best when he’s spitting lines at 100MPH, as he does on ‘You’re Mine’, which comes towards the end of the record and is a perfectly-timed shot in the arm. Deceptively simple riffing and powerful drums feature in what’s definitely the catchiest song on the album, and this is saying a lot, because ‘Romancing’ is a record that definitely wears its pop heart on its sleeve. You won’t find many albums this year that are more fun than this one.
Romancing is out now via No Evil; Rolling Stone is streaming the album in full.
Posted by Gareth O’Malley
Tags: 2012, album review, devin, Gareth O'Malley, romancing