The Austin Chronicle

SXSW Platters


Reviewed by Darcie Stevens, March 14, 2008, Music

Los Campesinos!

Hold on Now, Youngster ... (Arts & Crafts)

"What the World Is Waiting For," final segment of the Dennis Hopper-narrated seven-part series Seven Ages of Rock, traced Britpop from the Smiths to Oasis, sketching out a cycle of machine rebellion. Cardiff, Wales' Los Campesinos! are revolting against modern UK bar rock (Arctic Monkeys, the Libertines), and debut Hold on Now, Youngster ... toys with that apostasy. The seven pseudo-siblings who share the surname "Campesinos" ply über-British indie pop, replete with "Parklife" spoken word (on the verbose "This Is How You Spell 'Hahaha, We Destroyed the Hopes and Dreams of a Generation of Faux-Romantics'"); boy-girl back-and-forth vocals; chaotic, cynical visions ("... And We Exhale and Roll Our Eyes in Unison"); and Canadian intonations ("Sweet Dreams, Sweet Cheeks"). It might be one big, saccharine, catchy fuck-you to the industry and culture, but it's really just addictive songwriting reared on Britpop pioneers who didn't prioritize reputation over substance. (Saturday, March 15, Parish, 12mid.)


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