Canadian quartet, Tokyo Police Club is back"" with their full length debut, Elephant Shell, armed with an arsenal of new songs and full of energy.
TPC made their way into the indie scene in 2006 with the success of their self-released EP, A Lesson in Crime, a high energy, dance-punk-packed 16 minutes of songs.
On their new album, Elephant Shell, the term ""full-length"" is used loosely, considering it has a full eleven tracks, but these span only 28 minutes. Most bands need more than two and a half minutes to entertain the listener and convey their message, but Tokyo Police Club doesn't, showcasing thought provoking lyrics, driving beats and quirky guitar riffs.
""Centennial"" starts the album on a strong note, bringing back heavy drum beats and xylophone riffs placed at all the right times. Vocalist David Monks is as strong as ever and seems to have developed his singing voice compared to the yelping on TPC's first EP.
Elephant Shell continues on with single-ready songs ,such as ""In a Cave"" and ""Graves,"" that blend together and make the album feel more like one long track than individuals. TPC keeps listeners elated, despite such morbid lyrics in ""Graves"" as ""Our hair tangled up in hers / Fingernails beneath the dirt / Sharing all her blackened brains / Our blood running through her veins.""
After shocking those who pay attention to the words and not just the music, the band returns with the lively single ""Tessellate."" Easily the track that feels most like their earlier work, ""Tessellate"" has everything great about TPC. From simple heavy drum beats and xylophone, to hand claps and solid lyrics such as ""Trade our places in the night / We're running barefoot you and I,"" it's hard not to dance.
On ""The Harrowing Adventures Of...,"" TPC tries slowing things down for a change. String backgrounds and soft lyrics try to hold the track together, but the mid-CD placement breaks up the energetic tracks, making this a much better closer.
However, TPC doesn't waste time bringing back the dance in the next songs, ""Nursery, Academy"" and the ironically titled, ""Your English Is Good.""
Clocking in at just under three minutes, ""Listen To The Math,"" is a showcase of lyrical greatness. It is definitely possible that this is the only song ever written to mention a certain four million-year-old human species: ""Australopithecine / Rekindle your heart / These hospital machines / Are state of the art,"" Monks sings, leading the listener to pick up a dictionary.
There's no doubt Tokyo Police Club will make a name for themselves on this impeccable debut. All of Elephant Shell's 30 minutes will make a perfect addition to the 2008 summer soundtrack.