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Talent and charm to spare

Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever
Men's Needs, Women's Needs, Whatever
By the Cribs

Warner Bros. Records: 2007

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This review first appeared in Turbula in July 2007.

Hailing from Yorkshire, the three Jarman brothers show a light-hearted, playful approach to indie rock on their third album. Combining the clever wordplay and off-kilter vocal delivery of Cake with the tongue-in-cheek musicality (and multi-vocal harmonies) of Madness and a touch of Weezer's, well, geekiness, The Cribs create a sound that is above all fun.

Ryan plays guitar and sings, with his twin Gary also singing and playing bass; younger brother Ross plays drums.

For a trio, they get a heck of a big sound – but a portion of that can actually be attributed to their songwriting: The 12 songs on the album are all frantic little rockers that don't leave a lot of room for empty space.

The fact that those songs also have a Cake-like charm with melodic hooks to spare doesn't hurt, either.