by Tim McMahan, Lazy-i.com
My take on The Wombats: In a lot of ways they’re just a meat-and-potatoes powerpop trio, solid in all respects. The problem is that their music just isn’t terribly interesting. Certainly it’s not unique in any way. But maybe that’s why it’s so appealing to the 200+ youngsters who crowded the main floor at Slowdown last night.
Wombats play straight-forward freewheeling power-ballad love songs without a hint of angst, irony or despair. And when you’re 19 and living in Midwest suburbia consuming a healthy diet of reality television with pop stars manufactured on gameshows like The Voice, how much angst, irony and despair do you really need (or want)?
It isn’t that much different than when I was their age. We listened to Van Halen to forget about the rest of the world and live vicariously through David Lee Roth’s crotch conquests — that was what mattered. It seems like the rise of self-obsessed confession rock didn’t come until much later, and even then, it was never very popular. The audience for Van Halen is exponentially larger than the audience for Morrissey or The Cure. You can draw your on conclusions as to why.
But I digress. Wombats reminded me of Weezer, albeit a form of Weezer sung with a cockney accent and completely devoid of irony, self-depreciation, self-consciousness or self-doubt. Instead, it was sing-along anthems about girlfriends, and there’s nothing wrong that, though when it isn’t done with at least a sliver of something different it quickly becomes boring, the kind of music that’s very easy to ignore. Harmless.
As I was watching the girls scream when the lead guy bent down to touch their hands I wondered if angst will ever return to fashion with the Glee generation. How stupid of me. We all know that all it takes is a broken heart.
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After a busy week, it looks like a light weekend for shows.
Tonight at O’Leaver’s ’80s flavored post-punk band Deadwave headlines a show with Lincoln miscreants Plack Blague. $5, 9:30 p.m.
Meanwhile, down at
Slowdown Jr. Slowdown’s big room, All Young Girls Are Machine Guns celebrates the release of a new CD with Laura Burhenn of The Mynabirds and Field Club. $8, 9 p.m.
I got nothing for Saturday. If you have any suggestions, leave them in the comments area. Have a good weekend!
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Read Tim McMahan’s blog daily at Lazy-i.com — an online music magazine that includes feature interviews, reviews and news. The focus is on the national indie music scene with a special emphasis on the best original bands in the Omaha area. Copyright © 2012 Tim McMahan. All rights reserved.