Doves put their best feet forward by opening the album with what may quite possibly be their strongest song yet. Jetstream has a tangible push and pull which keeps the listener in a state of positive tension throughout. The subtle build of sounds, textures and dynamics, the clattering electronic drums, rolling fuzz bass and the tired, distant vocals come together to form a beautiful unifying whole. The explosive ending is a really gratifying pay-off too and really underlines the bands ear for an epic crescendo, they are firing on all cylinders here.
It’s been four years since Some Cities, Doves’ last release, but there’s been no sonic upheaval here, no dramatic change of pace or direction: Kingdom Of Rust is unmistakably Doves, and you feel comfortable in its presence, like the return of an easy-going friend.
This is the band’s fourth album, and its most glaring virtue is the manner in which it mixes all that has been charming about the first three records into a new song-based stew. There are elements of the Manchester druggy dance music scene of yore, touches of electronica — even a nod to Kraftwerk in the sterling album-opener “Jetstream” — and a dash of the flirting-with-the-avant–gardestylings of the noise-pop that informed the band’s debut effort.
Josh Hathaway’s Fanboy Pick: Doves – Kingdom of Rust
Stop me when you’ve heard this one before: two brothers from Manchester, UK form a band – no, not Oasis! I’m talking about Doves.
Kingdom of Rust is the fourth full length album from Manchester’s other brothers and the long-awaited follow up to the fantastic Some Cities. Jimi Goodwin, the non-Williams brother in the trio, said the band went through a lot while making this record and likened the process to “therapy.” That makes for a bad time for the artist but often makes for great listening. First single “Jetstream” was briefly offered as a free single. Whatever the band did during their extended recording process, it doesn’t sound like they spent too much time messing with a good thing.
It’s the startling new sounds Goodwin and the Williams brothers try on, as found on the hard-charging, sharp-elbowed opener Jetstream or the sprawling 10:03, that give the Dan Austin/John Leckie-produced Rust its irresistible energy. While the more familiar moments are — duh — the most immediately gratifying, the spikier, stranger tunes burrow under your skin on repeated listens, creating an utterly satisfying whole.
“Kingdom of Rust” does not stray from the band’s sound on previous ventures but still remains fresh. The one thing holding the album back is the tracks begin to flow together with only a few really standing out.
“10:03″ is a beautiful movement of melancholy vocals, which swells into a heavy hitting garage rock ending.