ALBUM REVIEW: TEETH – Whatever

teeth whatever

Written for DIY

“Y’all think we care?” is the first line delivered on the debut album by Teeth. Psht, whatever, man. Teeth don’t care. They will not be told. They’re rebellious and snotty and loud enough to keep you up all night with their “electro-clash” (is that still a genre?). I mean, if you care about putting labels on things, you square.

The brattiness brought forth on high volume on this first LP, along with the fact that Teeth are a band that has a backing of electronic noise, fronted by a rambunctious female vocalist, leads to inevitable comparisons to the like of Crystal Castles.

Which isn’t entirely unfair, because they can sound similar; with Teeth, though, think less Atari 2600 sound boards, and more bang up-to-date techno synths.

The other difference is the fact that, unlike the lo-fi wailing of Alice Glass, frontwoman Veronica So’s dreamy singing and hollering – often reminiscent of Kathleen Hanna circa Le Tigre – comes through loud and clear. The higher fidelity levels make the Teeth experience a heck of a lot easier to take, and just more fun.

You could also draw comparisons with tour buddies Sleigh Bells, but Teeth seem more day-glo compared to Sleigh Bells tough leather exterior. There’s a familiar pounding drum sound throughout, but more programmed, electronic drums – shades of Peaches also – as if Derek Miller and Alexis Krauss were raised on house music and Es rather than thrash metal and speed.

As is typical of the genre, the lyrics are pretty oblique until “See Spaces”, which runs the gamut of personal experiences from the “let’s just be friends conversation” to missing someone, to losing someone, but the way it skims across the subjects makes it seem as impersonal as the rest of the songs.

Whilst the rebellious posturing schtick is a worn and battered twig by now, there are some undeniably catchy melodies across the album’s twelve tracks. The real tick of a song that burrows itself into your head is the catchy, fuzzy keys-lead “Time Changes”, which surely has to be a pick for next single.

Ultimately, though, Whatever really isn’t offering much new, making the repeating lyrics of “This Time” – “Same old / Grow old… Don’t let us stay the same / We’ve got to make a change” somewhat ironic.

6/10

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