Shout Out Louds
Howl Howl Gaff Gaff
With their album released by Capitol Records, Shout Out Louds has been put in the undesirable position of being delivered as the next, next big thing. The bet is that with North America crushing harder on The Arcade Fire than a 11- year-old girl on Corey Haim in 1988, the Shout Out Louds’ organic folk-rock assault will slip into a built- in crowd. Starting with the gleaming duo of “The Comeback” and “Very Loud,” it’s obvious why there are such high hopes for Howl Howl Gaff Gaff. The dynamic sound of “The Comeback” announces an upbeat rock track whose hooks snare deeply from the first listen. In under three minutes the band proves its potential to be hugely effective through a fairly minimal composition. They step things up even further with “Very Loud.” The song is an emotional showcase, its crashing chorus one of the more touching moments in music this year. From here on in, the album begins to twist and turn out of the mould the first two songs have laid out. From the delicate strumming of “Go Sadness” to the proggy “Seagull,” each track follows its own course, avoiding promoting a cohesive and marketable tagline sound. This approach leads the disc into a seemingly random series of directions that only solidify after a third or forth listen. The album is worth the attention — its complex series of songs offer more on each successive spin. Ultimately, HHGG is the kind of record that major labels have made a business of mishandling. Seek it out on your own terms.