Drop Little Boy

The May Bees

Wampus Multimedia, 2007

http://www.themaybees.com

REVIEW BY: Jason Warburg

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 11/28/2007

I’m not sure if Wampus Multimedia has in fact become the nexus of all that is fresh and different and indefinably compelling in the independent music universe; I only know that it sometimes seems that way after spinning a disc like the May Bees’ Drop Little Boy.

The May Bees are a Dutch duo consisting of Gregory Orange on lead vocals and guitar and Marzj on drums, backing vocals and keys, with guests Pieter de Koning and Flip providing bass guitar.  If that alignment sounds a bit like Jack and Meg White, that’s not a bad starting point in imagining the May Bees’ sound; they definitely tap the same vein of big thrashy garaged-out Zeppelin/Pixies thump that lies at the core of the White Stripes’ oeuvre.  But from that basic starting point, the Bees veer off in all directions at once, steering into the melody line with their engines running hot on an explosive mixture of precision pop craftsmanship and torrents of gut-busting guitar.nbtc__dv_250

Moments like the hammering punk-pop of “Yeah! Come On!” briefly suggest a sweat-drenched Euro Green Day, but just when you might think you have them pegged, the Bees startle with the slow pulse of the extended “Mess,” which performs a steady build over a surprisingly compelling seven minutes.  And then you’re into “Everlasting Lover,” which matches fat guitars, bells and heavily distorted vocals into a squalling blast of Frank-Black-on-acid musical mania.

That little triptych is the core of the May Bees’ argument for, as the Wampus one-sheet aptly calls it, “melodic abandon at passion volume.”  That said, there’s no escaping at least a mention of the head-banging throb of “Black Queen,” and the majestic Brian-Wilson-meets-Kurt-Cobain wall of sound that is “The Enemy’s Scientist.”

If your tastes run to safe, predictable prefab pop, you should probably steer clear of this album and go catch the Spice Girls reunion tour instead.  But if you’d like to hear something that would probably set all of their hair on fire at once, you might be just the kind of listener who’ll fall hard for the May Bees.  Drop Little Boy is 34 minutes of the opposite of boring.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


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© 2007 Jason Warburg and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Wampus Multimedia, and is used for informational purposes only.