Tokyo Police Club – Melon Collie & the Infinite Radness (Part 1) EP

Tokyo Police Club
Tokyo Police Club (Photo courtesy of Billions)

(If you like: Ra Ra Riot, Born Ruffians, Wolf Parade) 

Tokyo Police Club are one of those bands that seem to be a critical part of the Canadian indie music identity, but are not as quick to be mentioned. Either way, their debut full-length Elephant Shell back in 2008 with the insatiable hit “Your English is Good” was the first stepping stone towards a successful career. Celebrating their ten year anniversary as a band this year and their debut A Lesson In Crime EP, the Newmarket four-piece have released their latest EP Melon Collie & the Infinite Radness (Part 1) – a playful pun of the Smashing Watermelon – I mean Pumpkin – 1995 album.

If compared to their earlier work around the time of Elephant Shell and Champ, the new EP is alright; satisfying even. The catchy hooks and youthful energy still remain, but there is something hollow and empty sounding about the 5-track collection.

If compared to their more recent record 2014 record Forcefield, then it’s right up there with the simple, catchy hooks, and easy-digestible alt-radio hits that brought TPC into a new light of popularity.

Fans were first introduced to the EP’s lead single “Not My Girl” back in February, and you could almost see the glisten in their eyes as flashbacks of 2008-2010 TPC danced in their memory. Monks’ casual vocal delivery, and the band’s post-punk revival sound with a slight updated twist were well received, even creating positive anticipation for the rest of the collection.

Now that the day has come, the anticipation was slightly overhyped. “PCH”, “Ocean”, and “Losing You” – literally the album’s filling – were less than impressive. Generic indie pop, oddly placed synthesizers (I’m looking at you “Ocean”), and basic hooks and lyrics make it difficult to be genuinely excited about. It’s nice to listen to but…meh.

I had almost given up on the record at “Losing You” (the B-side track has a lovely chorus, but loses its grip with each verse); however, Melon Collie Part 1 had one last push left with “Please Don’t Let Me Down”, a high-energy, old-school TPC hit (appropriately titled it seems). The band’s familiar chant-along choruses and dance-friendly melodies resurfaced in nostalgic fashion, bringing the four-piece back ten years and their music full circle for one of TPC’s best songs to date.

And although it may not be their best work, Tokyo Police Club do get some credit for putting together this record in a short timeframe. They spent about a week in New York writing and recording, which, at the end of the day, is fairly impressive. Who knows – Forcefield took a few listens to enjoy, maybe the same thing will happen with Melon Collie & in the Infinite Radness Part 1. 

You can stream Melon Collie & the Infinite Radness (Part 1) over at SPIN.com, and order your copy through the band’s website. They will be headed on tour this spring as well, so check out the dates below.

Tour dates:

4/15 Hamilton, ON- Casbah Lounge (SOLD OUT)
4/16 Hamilton, ON – Casbah Lounge (SOLD OUT)
4/18* Boston, MA – Paradise TICKETS
4/19* Philadelphia, PA – Union Transfer TICKETS
4/20* New York, NY – Irving Plaza TICKETS
4/21* Washington, DC – 9:30 Club TICKETS
4/22* Durham, NC – Motorco Music Hall TICKETS
4/23 Atlanta, GA – SweetWater 420 Festival TICKETS
4/24* Tallahassee, FL – Club Downunder FREE
4/26* Orlando, FL – The Social TICKETS
4/27* Orlando, FL – The Social TICKETS
4/28* Fort Lauderdale, FL – Culture Room TICKETS
4/29* Saint Petersburg, FL – The State Theatre TICKETS
5/1* Pensacola, FL – Vinyl Music Hall TICKETS
5/2* Birmingham, AL – Saturn TICKETS
5/3* Nashville, TN – Mercy Lounge TICKETS
5/4 *St. Louis, MO – Old Rock House TICKETS
5/5* Louisville, KY – Headliners Music Hall TICKETS
5/6 Cleveland, OH – Grog Shop TICKETS
5/7 Albany, NY – Tulip Festival TICKETS
5/28 Toronto, ON – The CBC Music Festival TICKETS
6/2^ Ferndale, MI – The Loving Touch TICKETS
6/3^ Madison, WI – Majestic Theater TICKETS
6/4^ Des Moines, IA – Wooly’s TICKETS
6/6^ Omaha, NE – Slowdown TICKETS
6/7^ Englewood, CO – Gothic Theatre TICKETS
6/10^ Seattle, WA – The Crocodile TICKETS
6/11^ Portland, OR – Wonder Ballroom TICKETS
6/13^ San Francisco, CA – The Regency Ballroom TICKETS
6/15^ Los Angeles, CA – El Rey Theatre TICKETS
6/17^ Solana Beach, CA – Belly Up TICKETS
6/18^ Phoenix, AZ – The Crescent Ballroom TICKETS
6/20^ Austin, TX – Emo’s TICKETS
6/21^ Dallas, TX – Trees TICKETS
6/23^ Champaign, IL – The Accord TICKETS
6/24 Grand Rapids, MI – Pyramid Scheme TICKETS
6/25 Kitchener, ON KOI Fest At The Parking Lot TICKETS

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