Maybe I’m just nitpicking here, but it seems that Dum Dum Girls are a band that can’t quite seem to live up to my expectations. Their first album, 2010’s I Will Be was a thoroughly awesome mixture of Ramones-inspired garage pop splashed with a dash of ’60s girl-group melodrama. And needless to say, I was quite excited for their second album — which certainly had it’s moments, but overall saw the Dum Dum Girls fumbling their way into a more mature sound. After that, I was basically ready to give up on them, but then came the unexpected greatness of 2012’s End Of Daze EP, which might hold the pretty much meaningless distinction of being my most listened-to EP ever. So this leads us to the question, is their third album just another case of the Dum Dum Girls building me up just to let me down? Well… kinda, but there’s still some good stuff here.
Maybe the problem is that up until now I’ve failed to realize that the Dum Dum Girls should be appreciated as a singles band, rather than one capable of putting out consistently great albums. This would after all explain why they’re so good at EP’s. And the fact of the matter is that head-Dum Dum Girl Dee Dee Penny has crafted a few more gems on Too True, even if as a whole the album never quite hits its cohesive stride. Among these gems is “Rimbaud Eyes”, a slightly more sinister take on the Dum Dum Girls’ usual brand of teenage lust, while “Too True To Be Good” sees Dee Dee continuing to infuse soaring melodies into lyrics that evoke the more melancholy side of pop romance.
You could say that Too True sees the vehemently ’60s and ’70s-inspired Dum Dum Girls venturing slightly more in to 80s territory, since there are moments of drum machines and synthesizers that occasionally pop up. But for the most part, it sees Dee Dee taking her group in to a slightly more slick and concise direction, while still retaining it’s signature brand of bad girl indie pop. And like pretty much every other Dum Dum Girls release, there’s a pretty great ballad thrown in to the mix with “Trouble Is My Name”. So maybe Too True isn’t quite a leap forward, but it has just enough stand-out tracks that it never really needs to be.
Favorite Tracks: “Rimbaud Eyes”, “Too True To Be Good”, “Trouble Is My Name”