Incredibly, ‘The Scenic Route’ (order via Bandcamp here) is Dropkick’s 16th album. Released via Bobo Integral Records, the Scottish band claims it’s their ‘most accomplished, coherent and fully realised collection of songs to date’.
With a melody Norman Blake would be proud to call his own, ‘Feeling Never Goes Away’ opens the album with a joyous, celebratory tone: ‘I’m alive today, I hope this feelng never goes away’. Jangly guitar hooks signal the introduction of ‘Catching On’, a romantic song that looks back at first meetings and being ‘so far from home’. The guitars are then turned up on ‘Disappearing’, a track that also features what sounds like a hammond organ and writing a story: ‘Once I’ve finished, I’ll amend it so it’s more exciting at the start’.
‘I’m Over You, Goodbye’ is a self-aware break-up song that begins with an acidic tone (‘Just as well you’re drifting out of sight’) before backing down and trying to focus on the positive memories: ‘Hopefully the music in me complements every image burned inside your brain’. There are Crowded House vibes running through the heart-on-the-sleeve lyrics and sound of ‘For Too Long’: ‘Losing track of time, can’t explain my thoughts’. ‘Tomorrow’ is a short and sweet song about losing confidence: ‘I won’t find the answers by asking you the questions’.
‘Broken”s piano-led opening makes way for anthemic drums and more tales of heartbreak (‘All was broken from the start’) and the closing ‘You’ll Always Be There’ is altogether more sombre: ‘When it’s time, you’ll always be there in my life’; ‘I should have asked you for your good advice but you always keep it in’.
‘The Scenic Route’ is an album that you’ll love spending time with.