Yeah Yeah Yeahs Fever To Tell

Like the cities themselves, there are clear divisions between the dominant rock of modern-day Detroit and New York. Detroit deals in lo-fi grit, raw blues and metallic heaviosity, while NYC favours jangling guitars, pop-punk riffs and neo-Manchester melancholia. On their debut LP, NYC’s Yeah Yeah Yeahs bridge the super sounds of these cities. We begin in Detroit, the album’s first half teeming with sexual tension, jutting and grooving under Karen O’s unhinged belts and screeches. "Tick” and the impending single, "Date With a Night,” are like heart attacks you can dance to, epitomising the Yeah Yeah Yeahs we know best from their past EPs: primal, spastic and hook-heavy. By "Pin,” however, we’re clearly approaching the Big Apple, O’s mania slowly turning cerebral, the riffs recalling the Strokes. Guitars sporadically bear down with awesome force, but the songs are longer and measured, O’s voice increasingly calm. Stoned reverb spreads over "No No No,” a five-minute, dub land tangent. With the morose love song "Maps,” they’ve swum out into Interpol’s chilly, mid-Atlantic waters, and the dirge-like finale, "Modern Romance,” has us sending out the rescue team. Amazingly, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs complete the voyage with few bumps, narrowly bypassing the "homage” practised by the other bands mentioned above. The trip from Detroit’s pummel and swagger to NYC’s world-weary smarts reveals their dynamic potential, showing that they can burn hotter and brighter than any flash in the pan, and keep cooking when the plate cools off. (Interscope)