Tapes ‘n Tapes – Walk It Off

XL Recordings

Tapes ’N Tapes are presently waist-deep in the backlash that often hits bands who’ve had their debut album receive massive hype and critical swooning well before its release. Though somewhat expected the backlash to the group’s second album Walk It Off doesn’t really make sense. Then again the praise debut album The Loon received didn’t make much sense either as it was little more than a decent rock album encompassing as many hip trends in guitar rock over the last 15 years as possible.

Walk It Off is the same. It’s confident well composed possesses a detached bluster and sounds entirely of the moment. Nothing’s wrong with this but nothing’s particularly inspired about it either. The only way Walk It Off really differs from its predecessor is in trading a bit of The Loon’s scrappy youthful vigour for a more refined approach to songwriting. Thanks to this small shift the album does lose a bit of the immediacy that doubtlessly had something to do with Tapes ’N Tapes initial success but it hardly explains the reaction the band’s two albums have received.

If Walk It Off proves anything it’s not that Tapes ’N Tapes have succumbed to the sophomore slump it’s that they’ve always been decidedly average. The band aptly recalls the likes of Pavement The Pixies Modest Mouse The Strokes and Wolf Parade but doesn’t give listeners a reason not to just spend their time revisiting those bands.