White Denim – ‘Corsicana Lemonade’
It’s not cool to be good at your instruments. So far, White Denim have spent three albums grappling with this dilemma.
Their last, ‘D’, was their first as a four-piece. It was slick and no little bit grandiose – a breakout for a band whose incredible musicianship was not always apparent on record, obfuscated as it was by deliberately ragged production.
But if ‘D’ was White Denim giving in and accepting that they’re musos not hipsters, ‘Corsicana Lemonade’ finds these Texans comfortable in their own snakeskin boots.
The band’s fourth is a throwback that lands between southern rock and the hippies of halcyon California – it’s pure Canned Heat and Steely Dan, and it’s not a sound that’s particularly in vogue.
‘At Night In Dreams’ would have your music teacher massaging his mouche in appreciation. ‘Pretty Green’ ends in a flourish of guitars that sounds like the Top Gear theme. ‘Come Back’ is centred around a riff that Lynyrd Skynyrd might’ve misplaced in 1974. Clearly, they’ve given up on the cool thing; pair it with a golf towel and it’d make an amazing Fathers’ Day gift.
But at what point are you so uncool that you’re cool? White Denim continue to teeter there.