Quick Hitters:: Diamond Rings

Every time a new Diamond Rings video hit the cyberwaves, I felt a little bit like Mugato. I was floored by how quickly and wholeheartedly people ate up John dancing around in thrift store NBA jerseys, unveiling choreographed dance moves that would make Ian McGettigan’s dance troop blush and really, making the most out of yard sale synths and simple programmed beats. It wasn’t that I didn’t think the songs were good - well, that was part of it I guess - it was more that I couldn’t believe that everyone else absolutely LOVED them.

 

Obviously, I didn’t expect Special Affections to interest me at all, so I should give credit where credit is due; John is a more charismatic, deep voiced front man that I expected and a much better lyricist. The efficient 10-song affair offers the requisite drum machines, electric guitar and synths but O’Regan spikes the affair with emotion and well place female backing vocals (“Give It Up”), and truth be told, separating the songs from the flamboyant visuals helped me settle into the record. The emotional attachment O’Regan offers the man vs. machine equation is strengthened when he’s not worried about matching his Air Force 1′s to his eye shadow, going all Kensington Market Guys and Dolls or re-enacting the scene from Teen Wolf when Scott Howard won’t go wolf.

 

John’s diversity is essential to the record; the mid-tempo jams like the haze filled “It’s Not My Party’ and “Pre-Owned Heart” (especially the piano) give Special Affections a depth that wasn’t offered (or required) on his singles, but without their inclusion, Diamond Rings could have drifted into the one-note novelty realm I originally pegged it to be. The thing is, that “one-note” is a lot more intricate and appealing than you’d think. It’s hard to not nod along to “You & Me”, but the more you listen, the more you realize the same can be said about almost any of the uptempo 80′s synth/90′s indie rock collages John builds. Considering John’s touring the world and playing huge festivals, an acknowledgment from a blogger in Halifax is the last thing he needs, but it’s what he’s getting.

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MP3:: Diamond Rings - All Yr Songs

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MP3:: Diamond Rings - Wait & See
WEB:: http://diamondringsmusic.com

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This entry was posted on Monday, November 8th, 2010 at 10:23 am and is filed under 2010, Canada, Music, Quick Hitters, Reviews. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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