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Famous Class Records

There’s something very likable about Darlings, and it’s not just the urge to spoon that their name conjures up. I think, partly, it’s because I like to be surprised by music and the female lead I was expecting on this release just wasn’t so…leading – though she was there in the background. The rest of these warm fuzzy feelings stem from the vague sense of familiarity about this record; Warma is a sort of “smoosh” of ideas, sounds and other bands – and, yet, it seems to work.

When I say I was expecting the female lead, it’s because instrumentally (especially in terms of their guitar work and on the song “Magna Farta” – yes, you read correctly) Darlings sound a lot like Pretty Girls Make Graves. That’s not a bad thing, but it does come with certain expectations and a voice that combines The Moldy Peaches with Noah and The Whale doesn’t exactly fit that mold.

There are some pretty good tracks here, and the whole thing’s quite danceable…in a sort of swaying sense of the word and it does have a sort of low-level gritty energy about it. A sort of pebble-dash feel – stones that probably wouldn’t hurt that much if someone threw them at you but you wouldn’t want them in your shoe.

To say this is a bad EP would be a lie – in reality, as a stand-alone effort, it’s a fairly solid pop-punk record. Of course, to say that it really lacked an ounce of originality would also be an unpleasant truth; I could easily listen to Warma, straight through, without feeling the urge to vomit (a feat not yet achieved with any Scouting For Girls album), but I’d spend the entire time thinking “Who does this sound like?” rather than “This sounds great.”

–Karl Smith