From “A dingy, damp and cold practice room in the heart of Birmingham” come Dumb, the latest indie rock four-piece conceived by The Second City. Subsequent to the likes of Peace and Swim Deep’s recent mainstream success, The Black Country exports another guitar-driven, nineties-inspired troop. Incidentally, is it the weather that so stubbornly infuses the music with such gloominess?
What do they sound like?
Dumb released second single ‘Retina’ in August, the follow-up to their debut ‘Dive’ in March earlier this year. There’s a certain classicism emanating from them: the standard vocals/guitar/bass/drums line-up, the decidedly nineties hair, the general brooding image of ‘indie’ – it’s comfortable and it’s familiar. Shaped from what the band notes as their “early nineties American and mid-nineties British” influences and inspirations, Dumb emerge with a truly rounded, transatlantic, guitar-heavy sound – one that has been refined, perfected and gradually adapted over the years by many a British and American rock group.
‘Retina’, however, displays a flare for originality – a sense of broiling energy underneath the presently calm surface of a career. It’s a career that seems to hint at being on the cusp of burgeoning in style. In keeping with the good old-fashioned approach to making music, the band expresses this beautifully frank and self-effacing ambition: “to sign to the right label that will put out records with our name on”. For Dumb, things are fast escalating: both singles have been produced by Dreamtrak (London-based producer whose CV boasts the likes of Foals and Swim Deep) and recorded at The Charlatans’ Big Mushroom studio, a new single produced by Reverend and the Makers, London Grammar and We Are Scientists producer Cam Blackwood, and tour are to be anticipated in early 2014.
For your listening pleasure…
What’s the final verdict?
The degrees of separation between Dumb and some very big names are rapidly decreasing. For them, it would seem, with the dawn of 2014 it’s all systems go.
Words by Minnie Wright