The Pigeon Detectives – Up, Guards And At ‘Em!

written by: April 19, 2011
Release Date: April 12, 2011


The Pigeon Detectives want you to know they’ve grown up a bit. Or, at least they tried. Their sophomore record is the band’s attempt at selling themselves as a more defined and mature group who appreciate their success and want to please their acquired fan base. What translates into their music is a valiant effort, but it doesn’t seem to have executed the same intention they’d hoped for. The stream consists of 10 songs that could’ve been made into three tracks. This is surely the band’s most prominent weakness.

The album starts off with the second single “She Wants Me,” which is the record’s early proud moment. It is slick and neat in the way it is produced. The simplicity it possesses is fresh but also surfaced. It doesn’t go the distance, but it sure provides a somewhat catchy jam to start the record. What we hear next is heavy drums into a more rock type of tune as opposed to the indie pop-rock we just heard. “Lost” starts with a significant beat that leads into a tune which picks up momentum before it pauses and returns after the bridge. It’s an exciting effect for listeners who’ve just started listening to the record in order.

The tracks go from moderately striking to generally likeable as the ironic “What Can I Say” brings a taste of what we’ve already heard. When “Done In Secret” comes along, it becomes very obvious that the band repeats many of their lyrics as part of the chorus. This may be the band’s style, but it gets very old.

It almost makes listeners wonder whether The Pigeon Detectives lack substantial songwriting ability or if they just wanted to stick to their sort of character habits. Either way, there’s always a bit of shame in redundancy.

These patterns become exceptionally bothersome once “What You Gonna Do?” starts to repeat its title words over and over, alongside what sounds like the same backing guitar riffs as any other songs on the record. It was clever of the band to feature the vintage-sounding “I Don’t Know You” to close out the album with a smiley track because it might cause its listeners to forget how dense the record is. Though it’s disconnected from the rest of the set, its charisma and classicism are a pleasant encore to the flimsy new release.

If every song on Up, Guards And At ‘Em played each chorus only the standard amount of times and no lines were repeated, the record could be condensed to one third of its length. Even though the album only fills a 36 minute period of time, much of it gets accomplished in the first song before it becomes redundant. They’re lucky they have the Yorkshire charm to partly cover for their faults, because from the sounds of it, the boys have a little more growing up to do.

The Pigeon Detectives – Up, Guards And At ‘Em! Tracklist:

  1. “She Wants Me”
  2. “Lost”
  3. “What Can I Say”
  4. “Need to Know This”
  5. “Done In Secret”
  6. “What You Gonna Do?”
  7. “Turn Out The Lights”
  8. “Through The Door”
  9. “Go At It Completely”
  10. “I Don’t Know You”