A Guide to Love, Loss & Desperation – The Wombats

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“With all the angst of a teenage band,” sings Matthew Murphy on the bridge of “Kill the Director,” “here’s another song about a gender I’ll never understand.” It’s sung with a healthy dose of irony, naturally, but it offers a fairly succinct window into the nature of the band: tongue-in-cheek, self-referential to a fault and perhaps not quite so witty as it has led itself to believe. None of this is to suggest that the Wombats’ music is boring or aggressively dumb — far from it — it’s just that all of the off-handed pop culture references and meta-poetics exist to serve one ultimate goal: the pursuit of goofy fun. It’s a fairly noble pursuit unto itself, to be sure, but it’s a far cry from the self-important mission statements of previous rock-'n'-roll-saving NME posterbands, and that, in and of itself, is enough reason to pogo along to the band as they celebrate life's ironies.