Album Review: We Are Scientists – Barbara

By on Thursday, 27th May 2010 at 2:00 pm

I absolutely loved We Are Scientists when they broke into the UK with their second album “With Love and Squalor”, with their perfect festival moments, amazing sing-alongs and plain, simple great pop. Then I think I had a bit of overkill, with their “let’s try and keep the party going” albums of “Crap Attack” and “Brain Thrust Mastery”, which fell way short of my expectations. However, it sounds like they’ve grown up, moved on and made an amazing collection of songs that is both more mature and great indie rock.

Overall it’s a more consistent album, full of radio friendly hooks, and also a few slower tracks too. We’ve already heard Nice Guys and Rules Don’t Stop, and these offer a great introduction to the album. “I don’t Bite” is full of the great fists-in-the-air festival moments, a potential single. “Jack and Ginger” offers a hark back to their “Brain Thrust Mastery” days, with a sprinkling of keys.

“Pittsburgh” is a personal highlight, a much slower number than we’re used to, but amazingly catchy – the refrain of “All we want is to be together / all we want is to sleep together / we’re only after one thing” is the sort of thing that the directors of (500 days) of Summer would have been drooling over. The double header of “Ambition” and “Break It Up” both have “potential singles” stamped all over them, and doubtless you’ll be hearing much more of them on the festival circuit this summer. Resisting the urge to close on a slow one, “Central AC” closes the collection off with a suitably brisk pace.

“Barbara” is a return to their roots, a bit more stripped back than “Brain Thrust Mastery”, plain simple guitars and drums. Joined by Andy Burrows (formerly of Razorlight) on drums, the album is everything WAS stand for – great, accessible, fists-in-the-air guitar anthems. Sure, there’s no “Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt” or “The Great Escape”, but the overall quality of tunes is much improved. If you’ve enjoyed the two singles we’ve had so far, you’ll love the album.

Barbara is released on June 14th in the UK.

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