Bring it out of ‘The Back Room’

Ben Breier

Credit: Carl Schierhorn

In the realm of independent music, flattery will get you everywhere – something Editors prove with their stateside debut, The Back Room.

If one didn’t know any better, the Editors could be mistaken for an Interpol cover band. However, at some points, this is completely acceptable, as the Editors make something old and borrowed addictive once again. Tracks such as “Munich” and “Blood” have a certain addictive, dramatic flare that Interpol actively fails to capture.

When the Editors attempt to diversify from their brand of stomprock, it comes off like a bad split in bowling – they knock down most of the pins, but fail to accomplish that big bullet point on the top of their itinerary: getting that strike.

“Camera” illustrates this point rather eloquently. Despite the fact that the song has amazing lyrics (“Look at us through the lens of a camera / does it remove all of our pain?), actually listening to the song is a whole different story. In a sense, the track is a successful failure – “Camera” manages to be poetic and fragile, but is incredibly boring to listen to. The same can be said of other down tempo tracks on the album, such as “Open Your Arms” and “Distance,” the latter of which sounds like a bastardized song by The Streets.

“Fingers In The Factories” is the only track that successfully combines some sort of passionate sentiment with quick-paced, danceable music. When lead singer Tom Smith sings “keep with me / keep with me,” there’s a sense that Smith is genuinely fearful of losing something important to him – something beyond the physical realm.


The Back Room

Released on Kitchenware

Stater rating (out of five): ???1/2

When the Editors stick to the dance punk they know best, the band is unmitigated in their genre – which has evolved from Gang of Four, to Joy Division, to Interpol and now to the present with the Editors. The band does a relatively good job of jumping into an already overpopulated genre as long as they stick to what they know – unadulterated rock and roll.

Contact assistant ALL editor Ben Breier at [email protected].