Japandroids' 'Near to the Wild Heart of Life' isn’t as wild as it is huge – big choruses, grand stories and giant sounds about running away from home.
It appears Urban Outfitters has set its sights on the regenesis of cassettes.
Japandroids will surely celebrate the breakout success of last year's 'Celebration Rock' album this summer by playing pretty much every festival known to man, but last night (Feb. 25), they got an early start to the festivities by stopping by 'Conan' to perform the tune 'The Nights of Wine and Roses.'
For Vancouver duo Japandroids, things almost ended before they got started. Frontman Brian King and drummer-singer David Prowse recorded their debut album in the summer of 2008 with the intention of releasing it independently the following year, but it wasn't long before they decided the band was going nowhere and should just break up. They decided to call it quits after two farewell appearances, but by January of 2009, thanks to glowing reviews from outlets such as Pitchfork, they'd changed their minds.
If it takes guts to be this simple, Japandroids are on straight-up hero status. The high-energy two-piece have mined the vibes of Tom 'n' Bruce-styled classic rock, the punk energy of the Replacements, and, judging from the unrelenting bashing they're give their instruments, their little brother's Ritalin and Kool-Aid stash.
It sometimes seems that the forces of Cool have overwhelmed those of Fun in the musical world of 2012. Luckily for us, there are still advocates for awesomeness, like mile-a-minute Japandroids. If "ooh-oh-ooh" choruses are an index of Gross National Happiness, ‘Celebration Rock’ is Bhutan (if that Himalayan kingdom were loaded with high-fiving, shout-it-from-the-rooftops stompers).