The Kills Midnight Boom

The Kills Midnight Boom
The Kills always seemed like a band that would never reach beyond a certain level of fame, thus making them the perfect cult band. While their first two albums enjoyed keeping the spirit of rock’n’roll seedy and minimal, that kind of shtick wouldn’t cut it a third time around. It appears Jamie "Hotel” Hince and Alison "VV” Mosshart were paying attention to their trappings, as this third go is a real charmer. Keeping the stripped down, one-string guitar riffing in check, the couple have looked elsewhere to boost the creative juices. Midnight Boom is restrained with its ambition, but the changes are remarkable in breathing new life into this apparently doomed duo. The beats are still programmed but are much more animated, approaching hip-hop and R&B patterns on "Cheap and Cheerful,” dynamic speed punk on "M.E.X.I.C.O.C.U.” and sputtering electro, with the aid of Hince’s goofy but still somehow cool vocal rhythm. Even the relatively familiar ground of "Last Day of Magic” finds the band writing their best song to date. To be honest, I wasn’t expecting much with Midnight Boom, but it’s a pleasant surprise. (Domino)