We’re only two months into 2017 and no album release (in my opinion) has been bigger than Japandroids third album, Near To The Wild Heart of Life. There had to be serious pressure on the Vancouver, Canada duo to follow up not only the best rock album of 2012, but arguably the best pure rock album of the decade. If Celebration Rock was their magnum opus then Near To The Wild Heart of Life is their Tunnel Of Love.
The album starts with “Near To The Wild Heart of Life”, the perfect rock anthem to kick off the album. I wrote about how great this song is a few weeks ago. You can read it HERE.
The rest of the album takes a more subdued tone than it’s predecessor. Celebration was 35 minutes of pure adrenaline; it rocked so hard you barely had time to catch your breath. In contrast Near To The Wild Heart of Life mellows out just a little bit. It still rocks, but not as hard and that’s not a bad thing.
However, there is one exception, “Arc of Bar”. This song (simply stated) rocks. There is a lightning-like synth glitching through the background, and at nearly seven and half minutes I wish it would go seven and a half more.
This is an album every lover of rock and roll needs in their life. Is this as good as Celebration Rock, no. But it’s the follow up we deserve. I wish I could sing “No Known Drug” to my wife every night before we go to sleep. Every song is that good, actually. Listen to it now.