In Farbe

by: Revolverheld

In Farbe is simply American post-grunge with German lyrics, and this is the only really essential thing to know about the record. Germany is capable of creating musical trends -- the Rammstein-led "Neue Deutsche Härte" is an obvious example -- but it's not immune to the worldwide phenomenon that pushes bands across the globe to localize popular styles by simply ripping off someone else's songs while adding lyrics in a local language. So, anyone looking for originality would be disappointed and perhaps even offended by In Farbe, which sounds like a bastard child of Foo Fighters and Nickelback, with a dash of Jimmy Eat World added in (and the "woo-hoos" of Blur's "Song 2" shamelessly used in "Darf Ich Bitten"). But with that out of the way, it must be said that Revolverheld do a great job of churning out a set of immensely catchy, captivating songs that are hard not to tap along to. All too many German bands playing pop/rock lack either power, or hooks, or both, and simply sound uncomfortable with their own songs, as if they feel they don't belong there and play with someone else's toys -- but the band that wrote In Farbe comes across as totally at home with what they do: there would be no telling they don't come from Florida or Washington, were it not for the lyrics, and they would be a strong contender stateside, too. Praising a band for sounding so much like someone else is a dubious compliment, but between the hook-laden riffs, the dynamic rhythms, and the well-placed semi-ballad breathers, In Farbe comes across as a very enjoyable commercial rock album, which is hard to pull -- even if it's a different kind of hard than doing something new. ~ Alexey Eremenko

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