Return

Danger Danger Silent Stranger

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The Return are an unapologetic throwback to the pre-Synchronicity Police, when Sting, Andy Summers, and Stewart Copeland were mixing the rhythms of reggae into bombastic British art rock, creating a hybrid that at its best transcended both styles. However, this California-based trio don't even close to prime Police as either songwriters or performers, and as a result, Danger Danger Silent Stranger sounds like a particularly listless re-creation of a bygone period of rock history. They are as the Killers are to Duran Duran, as Bloc Party are to Gang of Four, and as Art Brut are to the Fall, but they lack the cheeky spunk and pop suss of those bands. That leaves very little of interest in these 12 songs (plus one unlisted track, a lengthy instrumental that rehashes some bits of the rest of the album), either in terms of Derek Jennings' studiedly Brit-sounding lead vocals, the insipid lyrics, or the trio's technically impressive but otherwise uninspired reinterpretation of new wave-era cod-reggae. Devoted fans of the Police, the Ruts, or the Members might vaguely appreciate this approximation of a punky reggae party, but even they're likely to find it disappointing.

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