Kevin Drew - Darlings

Released March 18

By Vaughn Fjetland

Canadian legend Kevin Drew, known for his role with Broken Social Scene, recently released his latest solo album Darlings. Darlings is an enigma; a quizzical blend of comedic vocals and intense instrumentals. Drew's sophomore solo album seems to speak as an ode to the 90s. Mellow Patrick Watson styled instrumentals with vocals resonant of David Byrnes combine to father a smile inducing album. Hypnotic, comedic, and above-all strange Darlings' lyrics drip in over-the-top sexuality, most obvious in tracks like Good Sex, Body Butter, and Mexican Aftershow Parties. While the overt sexuality can be amusing, Darlings can feel like a lost album. The beats are not rugged enough to make the album sexy while the lyrics are too surface to make it deeply poetic leaving listeners lost somewhere in the middle. If you were a fan of Broken Social Scene it's likely you'll feel instantly drawn to many of the songs on Darlings which, while enjoyable, will (perhaps needlessly) remind you of the early 2000s and your terrible haircut. We all know you had one. Pressing play on It's Cool is familiar, like being greeted by your dog at the door. It brightens your day and causes your mouth to form this unfamiliar shape. Some people call that a smile.

A problem I found personally with the album is the overarching use of synth. This might not bother others as much as myself, but I found that by the time I was onto the last track it was beginning to weigh on me and carry the album down. Though this could be seen as the factor pulling the album together as a whole, I tended to lean more towards the feeling that it was overkill. Regardless, overall it is an enjoyable album. At 41 minutes it seems to be the perfect album for the start or end of a summer road trip, enjoying a drink with friends, or perhaps breathing in some of this incredible spring weather.