Love the Impersonations
Love the Virgins by Gliss is an album that immediately places itself in the background of today’s pop music scene through the same benign display of the tendencies of recent chart-toppers â€šÃ„Ã¬ recalling recent and distant past â€šÃ„Ã¬ incorporating synths and dance club beats without choosing a single direction. Though this has little chance of putting the band name in the mouths of hyperbole-blabbing scenesters, that doesn’t completely expunge the band from notoriety. Things begin strongly with “I Want You,” the track holding replay value above the other eleven. In just over four minutes, Gliss show their worth in musicianship with an electrical hum that builds to a guitar-chiming, darkly sleek pop song that Muse would be proud to call their own. The production by Marti Klingman deserves plenty of credit for the bass being the center which the guitars, lyrics and synthesizers spiral around. These are the only moments where Gliss aren’t drawing maps to their influences.
What the next eleven tracks show is a band trying to find its footing in the display of its influences. From the echoes of Them, early Kinks and The Stooges in “Huhâ€šÃ„Â¶What?” the noise architecture of Sonic Youth and My Bloody Valentine in “Innocent Eyes” and without Victoria Cecilia’s lazy lyric delivery on “Make Believe,” “Blue Sky,” or the title track, one could mistake them for OK Go or The Killers.
The unfortunate circumstance is Gliss’ inescapable inability to set themselves apart from what is already popular and trendy, an indicator of a band trying to find its feet. Love the Virgins is not a bad album by any stretch, but when a band so blatantly displays their inspiration â€šÃ„Ã¬ the album cover is even an homage to With the Beatles â€šÃ„Ã¬ without setting themselves apart, listeners may be unable to resist the urge to listen to one of those albums instead.