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Boomkat Product Review:
Given how much press this band has been enjoying (on both sides of the Atlantic) it's strange to think that this is only their debut album. Ever since the A Lesson In Crime EP hit shelves in 2006 there's been an enormous buzz around the Canadian quartet, and Elephant Shell does a decent job of delivering on the hype. The first thing to strike you about the band's sound is its chugging, Strokes-y approach to post-punk rhythms, packing in as many hooks as possible without compromising on a barbed indie rock integrity. Songs like 'Nursery, Academy', 'The Baskervilles' and 'In A Cave' do everything right when it comes to checking boxes: these tracks jerk viciously and harmoniously, sounding like an amalgam of all the most commercially successful guitar bands of recent years. As brilliantly executed as it all is, something like 'Juno' might come a little close to Interpol (Elephant Shell was co-produced with Antics and Turn On The Bright Lights producer Peter Katis) - and then there's the 'Mr. Brightside' opening of 'Tessellate'. Clearly Tokyo Police Club are at the more stadium-oriented end of indie, but they're in danger of sounding like they're chasing success a bit too hard. Who can blame them though? It's something they can pull off incredibly well. Once you're over the initial Killers reference 'Tessellate' shifts into a more ambitious mode, revealing itself as something that's pretty hard not to get suckered into loving. That statement's pretty much true of the record as a whole: once you come to terms with the fact that Tokyo Police Club have no qualms wearing influences proudly on their sleeves, Elephant Shell reveals itself as a highly impressive debut.