Words // Brian Hodge
Suckers’ full-length debut Wild Smile was undoubtedly one of my favorite releases of 2010. Featuring jangly, shimmery guitars, huge sing-along choruses and pervasive indie cool, it was an excellent release of new, infectious indie energy. Their multi-instrumental live performances, with singer Quinn Walker’s far-reaching falsetto, also drew raves. So it is with lofty expectations we turn to Candy Salad, the group’s 2012 release.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, the effort falls short.
They’ve tweaked the formula a bit, but the group still thankfully sounds like Suckers. The massive choruses and catchy tunes are still there, especially on numbers like “Chinese Braille” and “Figure It Out.” Too often, though, the major label polish has left a slippery veneer that is difficult to hang on to. The sweet spots in this “Candy Salad” are overworked to the point of being saccharine, missing the enjoyable looseness and excitement of Wild Smile.
There’s no doubt that these songs will slide in seamlessly with their debut in their live shows, and songs like “Lydia” shade brightly for an experimental, expansive sound in the band’s future, but this salad is certainly a mixed offering.