The five member band from Minneapolis seems to follow the path blazed by Joy Division while attempting to offer a fresh perspective, though it often surfaces with a a sound straight-from-the-80s.
With the song title “The 80’s Killed Your Boyfriend” and the upbeat sing-song-y tunes “Loaded” and “Sunshine on the Tenements,” The Idle Hands unashamedly link their sound and style to the post-punk movement of two and a half decades ago. Other, more story-telling, indie-pop songs, “Space Thing” and “Damage Control,” let loose a more empathetic, rock sound. Often rooted in standard danceable punk beats, their sound is carried on by driving electric guitar with intermittent picking, the occasional synth and keyboard lines. Ciaran Daily’s voice sometimes beautifully counteracts the hazy music with well-voiced falsetto melodies, though he more often sticks with his bashful young punk voice.
The Idle Hand’s music escapes the often-obnoxious, overdone grimy punk sound while retaining much of its energy. Their lyrics, however, remain stuck in their punk roots. Singing cliche lines about drinking, girls, and friends, The Idle Hands have some regrettable moments, such as the whiny and overdone line ‘I’ve Lost You Now’ repeated far too many times at the climax of the track “Secretary.” While their sound could be likened to mature, mellowed out punk, their lyrics have miles to go to match the maturity of their sound. A little less of ‘baby,’ ‘darling,’ and ‘just remember where your heart is,’ never hurts anyone.