2018 EPs/Albums

The Dollymops – Gap Year Tourists (Review)

You may never have heard of The Dollymops, but for any newbies, they’re a 4 piece, indie-punk band from Oxford. Drawing influences from the classic indie prodigies that are The Libertines, The Strokes, The Clash and that small band from Manchester called Oasis, The Dollymops second EP has that refreshing indie sound that every indie band strives to have. While still sounding quite vintage, the band have modernised the noughties indie sound with attitude.

“Plastic Proletariat” tells a story of a plastic (in other words “fake”), working class man. You know the band are quite angry with who ever this song is about with them even calling him a “condescending twat.” The angst and the pure indie accent that the singer portrays in this song identifies the song as a pure indie anthem. You can tell from the moment the song starts that this is such an important track in the Dollymops discography. Perhaps it could be a stepping stone towards a more rock and roll approach to their music. 

“Pied Piper” instantly reminds me of elements from The Kooks. It’s an upbeat, bouncy song that makes you tap your foot from the get go. As the vocals are introduced, I can’t help but think that Sean Stevens (lead vocalist) sounds similar to Morrissey. As for the instrumentation, it’s pretty straight forward all the way through and doesn’t really escalate. The subject of the song is situated about a “Pied Piper” and again, doesn’t really escalate to explain the true meaning. Perhaps it could be a metaphor and the pied piper is simply someone who encourages people to follow them and copy their actions. It’s never really stated properly what it’s about, making the audience feeling a little bit unsure of what’s going on. 

3 seconds of pure silence introduces “Addicts” before a melodic guitar riff enters with an identifiable punk tone. The chord progression is moved quickly and feels slightly rushed over the vocals. As the whole band enters, the mix of the song sounds like the band have recorded a live version in a garage, which I find really cool, you get the rawness of the band that way.. They probably didn’t actually record it in a garage though, it just sounds like it. Before we know it, the song has come to an end a bit too quickly. I feel that the song was screaming for a bigger arrangement to another world of possibilities for the band. 

The title track of the EP “Gap Year Tourists” rounds off the EP lovely. It’s a feel good song with lyrics full of wit and charm. The delivery of the song is simply just fun. This song would simply get any Dollymops fan on the dance floor straight away, just from the first bar. I can really hear The Smiths in this song and the post-punk vibe that’s radiating off this song is filled with nostalgia. A well crafted EP of some great songs. Their weak points aren’t even weak points, they are pure qualities of their work. I’d say the band need to get slightly tighter as there’s always room for improvement with any artist. The charisma of the band have really opened my eyes and they’ve definitely got a new fan over here. 

Favourite Tracks: Plastic Proletariat, Addicts, Gap Year Tourists
Score: 7/10

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