This Town Needs Guns are an extremely talented group of musicians; I could watch them perform for hours on end with nothing but a a vacant, slack-jawed expression for company. Intricate, complex, melodic: three perfect adjectives to describe this band.
On record though, I never get the same sense of awe and wonder. The previous album Animals showcased individual moments of brilliance, but the songwriting didn’t grab my attention and instead everything blended together unforgettably. Unfortunately 18.104.22.168.0 solicits the same reaction. The musicianship is undeniably excellent, but the songs themselves don’t excite me or live long in the memory.
The problem for me lies mainly with the vocal melodies. The more the album goes on, the more predictable they become, to the point where songs begin to blend together. Henry Tremain has a lovely, soothing voice, but his approach to melody is pedestrian and all too calming. I enjoy this album for its instrumentation, but if there was an injection of life into the vocals, it would be more of a complete package.
For me, the best way to experience this band is on the stage, not on record.