The Kills

Midnight Boom

Domino Records; March 2008

The Kills’ third releasewhich takes its title from a line by Jack Kerouacfinds the band morphing their sound beyond its primal dirty blues-meets-the-Velvet Underground-meets-Patti Smith roots to encompass eldritch-sounding electronica and mangled hip-hop elements, thanks to a MPC60 drum sequencer and Spankrock’s producer, Alex Epton, helming the mixing boards. However, diehard Kills fans will be grateful to discover that Jamie “Hotel” Hince and Alison “VV” Mosshart’s hedonistic death trip vibe still prevails on such tunes as “U.R.A. Fever,” while “Cheap and Cheerful” even has dance club cross-over appeal. Overall, Midnight Boom is more ambitiously playful than 2005’s lackluster No Wow, but 2003’s Keep on Your Mean Side still remains the truest testament to The Kills’ greatness.

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