Album Review: The Cribs – For All My Sisters

by Silja Slepnjov,

the-cribs-for-all-my-sistersFor All My Sisters is the sixth album from the prolific trio of brothers who stand firmly as one of the most steadily praised guitar bands of the past decade. The release is the first of a promised ‘pop’ and ‘punk’ album duo. Produced under the geek-rock luminary Ric Ocasek of The Cars, it definitely does what it says on the tin, at least if we’re talking of pop within the realm of The Cribs’ screamy punkish parametres. It is the superior domain anyway.

The balance between familiarity and a nuanced richness seems almost improbable but somehow the approach to pop through wailing vocals and practically the same three chords, slightly distorted, .produces a collection that feels like a classic, reminiscent of Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever, that should leave dedicated fans more than pleased. There’s no pretension or comportment, no sound-overhaul. A gimmick-free album full of crisp songwriting.

Finally Free offers a shrill and desolate start that gradually ascends into a rhythmic melancholy oscillation of a grand lovelorn hook.

Different Angle and Burning For No One are bound to become gig-goers’ favourites, with layered vocals, classic Cribs riffs and drums that callforadance.

Mr. Wrong is an interesting juxtaposition – it is more fast-paced, peppier, the riffs redolent of an up-and-coming indie-garage label darling, while the lyrics delve into a state of despair, speaking of ‘sleeping in a basement forever,’ ‘growing into something weaker’.

An Ivory Hand is a rough synthy piece where the twins Gary and Ryan take turns howling romantic regrets, also echoed in the dizzying

Pacific Time. City Storms, Summer of Chances, Spring on

Broadway and Diamond Girl all have a deluge of masterly energetic riffs that will get a crowd jumping and chanting along.

Simple Story is one of the most interesting tracks on the album – it’s an austere, ragged, acoustic-driven track, not entirely characteristic of The Cribs, a strumming narrative that seems to take the introspection even further than usual.

The album ends in a 7-minute epic, Pink Snow that crescendoes from a broken heavy- heartedness to a frantically determined chorus, a lingering hymn.

The Cribs have definitely still got it and ardent fans will undoubtedly revere For All My Sisters. It will be interesting to see whether the promised punk-focused album will be adapted to the consistently impressive classic sound or become a bravado piece addition to their opus.

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