Floating somewhere between The Faint, retro brit-pop, and dance rock groups like Franz Ferdinand, Klaxons are a bit of a buzz band in the UK, where they have seemingly come out of nowhere in the past year to lead their self-proclaimed "nu rave" revolution. Other than a danceable beat in most tracks and some occasional air-raid sirens, the group really doesn't have much in common with traditional rave music, but rocks the hi hats and buzzing synth/guitar combo like bands who only two years were being labeled "disco punk."
It really doesn't matter what you call it as long as it's got a funky beat and you can bug out to it, and Myths Of The Near Future has plenty of those moments. Front-loaded like crazy, the release blasts out of the gate with nearly a hand-full of insanely-catchy tracks before falling off in places during the latter half. "Two Receivers" opens things up with a distorted rumble of drums and takes off with filtered electronics, a solid bassline, and all kinds of effects while harmonized vocals give it a bit of an anthem feel.
"Atlantis To Interzone" follows, and might be the best track on the album as sirens wail over shredding guitars and frantic vocals. Blistering along with a 4/4 stomp, the track even flips on its ear about halfway through and turns into a bit of a ska-influenced shuffle before blasting right back into the thick of things. Although it's not quite as straightforward tailored for the dance floor, "Golden Skans" is no less hooky, with delirious vocal choruses offset by more straightforward brit-pop verses. And speaking of brit-pop, both "As Above, So Below" and "Forgotten Workds" sound like they could have been culled from a Blur b-sides collection.
As mentioned above, the album doesn't fare quite as solidly from there out, but with eleven tracks running just over thirty-six minutes, it's not like they let anything ramble on for too long. "Gravity's Rainbow" is a highlight of their sound, mixing perfect amounts jangling guitar, synth melodies, thumping drums, squiggling electronics, and sing-along vocals into just under two and a half-minutes of tightly-coiled energy. In the end, despite their cheesy "nu rave" label, Klaxons have put together a debut album that's mostly a blast of fun. With lyrics that might be a bit high-minded at times (with references that touch on literary luminaries like Thomas Pynchon and J.G. Ballard), this is some seriously fun music that's actually better than I thought it would be.