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White Denim are Texan punk rock reprobates who retired to a trailer in the secluded woods and conjured up one of the wildest concoctions of sound and style this year. Just as you settle into one groove or mood on Fits they flip it, twist and change the genre blender.
Radio Milk How Can You Stand It is a spastic rendering of MC5, with its wailing detroit guitar and galloping drums that goes all Beefheart in the last sixty seconds. Don’t bother holding your breath expecting more of the same because the trio dive straight into psych indie territory on All Consolation with a wah wig-out. Its an uplifting fuzz-fest, perfect for hazy summer afternoons.
I Start To Run is the most immediate track on Fits, Its a soul stomping rave up with milk bottle percussion and comes across like a white funk take on a blaxploitation flick. Sex Prayer goes dark and steamy like The Doors on happier drugs; its Santana shuffle miles from the spastic garage rock sounds that opened the album.
White Denim take a detour into folkier territory in the back half of the album with acoustic jams and some great singing variations that nicely balance out the earlier frenetic shape shifting. Regina Holding Hands rounds it all out with a stirring R n B, passion fueled ode to a girl that would make you laugh if it wasn’t so damn good.
If anyone can be accused of wearing their influences on their sleeve then White Denim certainly fit that bill. The thing is that they do it so naturally without a hint of pastiche or mimicry. That they can conjure up so many layers and styles is a minor miracle that would be fascinating to witness live. Don’t try and digest it, just sit back, pour another beer and marvel at the way it all fits together so thrillingly.