It’s hard to believe that Balance The Light is Dropkick’s 14th album. The East Coast Scots certainly don’t sound (or look) like grizzled veterans of the rock’n’roll world while the album is as fresh as a daisy and brimming with energy. Over the course of 16 years they’ve gathered a well deserved reputation as purveyors of power pop and sunny jangled country tinged rock, an idiom that we rain sodden Scots seem to do well in (see Teenage Fanclub, Daniel Wylie, Attic Lights) while they are, to paraphrase Tom Waits, “big in Spain.”
Their 2013 album, Homeward, saw the band, by then a five piece, expand their horizons with more keyboards in the mix, an occasional melancholic air and some tantalising glimpses of an almost psychedelic buzz. Balance The Light continues in this vein. There’s still a jangle in their stride but as befits a band with older heads on their shoulders that stride is more paced and measured, pausing to reflect.