You may recall that Guards is the band led by Richie Follin, who also plays in Strokes guitarist Nick Valensi’s side project CRX and used to be in Cults with his sister Madeline. (The siblings continue to make music together in the family band FOLLIN.) Shockingly, their debut album In Guards We Trust is now closing in on five years old. We’ve heard the occasional single from them in the interim, and now they seem to be revving up toward something bigger. It begins with a new track this week, a big, buoyant sing-along called “DESTROYER.”
I’m not 100% sure they called it that because the melody veers into Dan Bejar’s lane, but his influence is definitely up front in the mix. Underneath the hooks you’ll find synth-powered pop-rock that alternately shimmers and surges, breathing some fresh life into an aesthetic that in recent years has been leaving me weary. Think of it this way: The latest New Pornographers album Whiteout Conditions erred on the synthetic side, and Bejar did not chip in his usual handful of slightly tweaked oddities. So if you were missing his contributions on that project, this little burst of festival-ready songcraft may scratch your itch. Listen below.