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The Lights | Diamonds And Dirt | review | rock | Lollipop

The Lights

Diamonds And Dirt (Wantage USA)
by Ewan Wadharmi

Great rock bands are one thing. Having that instinctual ability to manipulate notes and phrases only to switch them up with no warning into a seamless manifesto that humbles the listener, making them disconnect all their amplifier cables with the intent of pawning various pieces of high-priced equipment because really, why bother? Yes, it's really that good. Like the first time you were blown away by Wire, or confounded by Mark E. Smith's lost-with-a-purpose ranting. The Lights are onto something substantial and know it well. Dream Syndicate's "When You Smile" starts in all sleepy-eyed and medicine headed, but the trip goes wrong and you're up all night talking down your friend from a fuzzy Velvet Underground panic. Then there's several flavors of spastic '60s and '70s garage with accelerated pituitary glands. You'll see plenty of glowing reviews of Diamonds And Dirt, most referencing Gang of Four. And while that's not too far of a stretch, The Lights have more of a kinship with McClusky's defiantly jarring, shoutable bumper-sticker-ready anthems slapped on a rumbling '72 Charger.


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