The Manvils Buried Love

Considering the wealth of under-produced and occasionally underwhelming indie pop emerging from Canada these days, it’s almost a relief to hear a band like Vancouver’s the Manvils turn up their amps, throw a few high kicks and just, you know, rock. Boasting a throwback ’60s blues attack that’s all swaggering licks and soaring, throaty wails, Buried Love is packed with the kind of self-assured strut rock that’s been shaking the dust loose from the roof beams of seedy, beer-by-the-glass house band joints across the country for decades and damned if it doesn’t sound like a good time. A notably top-heavy effort, standouts come in the first five tracks with "Between the Lashes,” which seems guaranteed to drag even the drunkest party girl to the dance floor with it monstrous, string-bending riff and Cadillac Tramps-esque hoots and hollers, as well as the stand-and-sway heartbroken lament of "Bible Billy.” Things taper off as the album wears on, however, filling up space with forgettable snoozers like "Over These Hills” and the Headstones-infused "Can You Feel Me” before culminating in the whale-sized, eight-minute blues jam of the title track. While Buried Love might try your patience every once in a while with its indulgences, it’s nonetheless a confident and promising debut. (Independent)