Pretend You’re Alive

Militia Group

Pretend You’re Alive is a shockingly good record, period. The band wears their influences on their collective sleeves: Radiohead, Remy Zero, Coldplay and Sunny Day Real Estate. Yet, Lovedrug has managed to take the best aspects of these band to create something completely incredible and fascinating, to say the least.

I wasn’t expecting to be so blown away by this release, as Lovedrug is a band that has risen from the ashes of shoegazers Kerith Ravine. That’s not to suggest that Kerith Ravine was bad, because they weren’t, it’s just that they weren’t nearly as stunning as Lovedrug is.

This album has several moods, from the spacey to the rockin’, from the longing to the bitter, from the lost to the expectantly urgent. What remains consistent throughout the album is the heavy, burdened mood. Lead vocalist Michael Shepard croons in a manner similar to Jeremy Enigk of Sunny Day Real Estate, crossed with Thom Yorke. Yet, his voice is unique enough that it will distinguish this band from the majority of their peers.

My favorite songs on the album include the destined-for-radio-greatness “Rocknroll,” the moody and swaying “In Red,” the heavily plodding and shifty “Pandamoranda” and the grandiose “It Won’t Last.” Lovedrug’s song structure is anything but basic, as they evoke a feel similar to The Cure or Radiohead, whose songs are built in both mood and intensity.

Make no mistake, this is not a pop-punk album. These guys, regardless of the Sunny Day Real Estate comparisons, are not an “emo” band, either. Lovedrug is more of a thinking man/woman’s art band, whose indie rock contemporaries would include Celebrity and the much missed Elliot. Pretend You’re Alive is an incredibly strong release; there’s truly not one throwaway song.

The Militia Group:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Summerland

    In rural England, a cranky woman bonds with and evacuee boy and uncovers a strange connection to her past.

  • Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations
    Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations

    These geniuses of early comedy finally get the presentation they are due in this Blu-ray edition.

  • Four-Letter Words
    Four-Letter Words

    No need to worry about offending delicate sensibilities with this playlist. We’re not talking about profanity, so just take the title at face value.

  • A Genesis In My Bed
    A Genesis In My Bed

    Former Genesis guitarist, Steve Hackett shares his life story in his story in an engaging and honest memoir. Reading his story feels like hanging out with a friend who’s interested in sharing how he felt living these experiences.

  • The Jayhawks
    The Jayhawks

    XOXO (Sham/Thirty Tigers). Review by Jeremy Glazier.

  • 18 to Party
    18 to Party

    When you’re in 8th grade, sneaking into a bar is way cooler than it is when you’re 40.

  • Adam

    A pregnant woman finds a home in Casablanca.

  • 2020 on Fire
    2020 on Fire

    Sound Salvation takes on current events with a playlist addressing the current fight for racial and social justice in America and the battles playing out in the streets in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd.

  • Pokey Lafarge
    Pokey Lafarge

    Rock Bottom Rhapsody (New West Records). Review by Jeremy Glazier.

  • Landfall

    Cecilia Aldarondo takes a look at Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria.

From the Archives