Put The Rifle Down releases New Dance LP

Toronto's Put The Rifle Down are at it again with their third studio album. And delightfully soon following last year's independently-released NRG. The upbeat, dance-punk-ish group, formed in 2004, round out an impressive roster of electronic artists from the heart of the city, including Woodhands, POWERS, Digits, The Russian Futurists, and TRUST (those neo-goth stragglers on the end there). Is it okay that I love them all, haha?

PTRD have a very warm sound in contrast to some of the other dreamers. (Digits, I find, has the iciest chill of them all.) The electronic drums on New Dance are sugar sweet, and Mike Countryman's vocals are sugar sweet. The intro to "Girls", their second single above, set the wheels spinning with repetitive, sing-along lyrics. Honestly, I thought they'd lose me, but instead, I'm addicted. There's enough variation in the synth loops to keep listeners anticipating the next sequence.

I can't quite make out the visually blurred chorus in "Awakening"... something like "the lights, girls, girls"? It's the only line in the entire short, 2-minute transition to the lead single, which you can stream below.

After the simple, straight-forwardness of "Alphanumeric", we return to PTRD's signature speedy percussive noise. "Summer On Speed" is not the only song on LSD, I'd say "Cell Death", "If Not Protected", "Feel Your Love" are sitting high and sparkly. The remaining tracks are only a slight clip slower in tempo, indicating that if the fast-paced dance album is only lacking in one thing, it's a ballad.

Could you imagine? I think that a PTRD ballad on New Dance would have me grinning from ear to ear. Y'know, just in case you and I both weren't already. This album makes 2009's Selector sound like a collection of church hymns. My personal favourite is "In Digital", a euphoric mid-album track a la M83's "We Own The Sky", but with less fuzz and more glam.

Track listing
01 Girls
02 Awakening
03 Alphanumeric
04 Cell Death
05 In Digital
06 Summer On Speed
07 If Not Protected
08 Forests Closing In
09 Feel Your Love
10 Do You Wanna Hurt Me

Guitarist Jordan Bimm was wonderful in allowing me to interview him for a school newspaper and sent me a copy of the album (which I may have just abused by using it to write this review), but you too can stream it in full here on exclaim.ca. Thanks again, Jordan, if you happen to stumble across this page! The release party will be next Thursday, October 20th at The Drake Underground.

Yes, silly- of course you should go!