Dumb – Club Nites

Arriving almost exactly twelve months since the release of their Mint Records debut album, Seeing Green Dumb return with a follow-up that pushes beyond the influence of their own making. Club Nites continues a seam of short, snap-fired tracks, but these songs offer a fuller-bodied account of the prolific quartet.

The concept that drives these ten tracks is one of urban nocturnal activities. Like Seeing Green, it’s rare for time signatures to extend beyond the emotionally urgent. Only three tracks reach above the three-minute mark. Energy is injected with a brittle sense that punctuation is everything. Keep. Things. Close. To. Sinew.

Brevity doesn’t mean that things are undressed. ‘Beef Hits’ discusses the pressure of performance required in social exchanges. Even when followers believe Dumb have “…The keys to the city…” all lyrics dress down the expectation of otherness, the band put a distance between themselves and the casual pretense of a scene. You think they’re outta there, but then a saxophone wails in, stabbing its deranged brassiness over the fuzz and distortion. It’s these surprising elements, as the band toys with who they are and who you think they are, that sets the undercurrent of the night-scene.

Dumb appear to fight against and enjoy the duplicity of the club scene. There are freedoms afforded here, and any existent rules are considered as unnecessary. We all have a friend who sees a ‘Do Not Enter’ sign on a door, and mentions “That sign is for everyone else, but not me.”. Well, that’s the kind of adventure Dumb embark upon.

Production keeps things tight and serious. Tonally, Franco Rossino’s voice counters the aggression of stabbed guitars and tight snares. There’s a quasi-self-seriousness. Life is too much, and it’s heartbreaking and funny and dumb. Makes sense that we’re at a point in culture where a track like ‘Condolences’ can exist. Just how awful it is when our Netflix ‘Watch Later’ queues get too long. Dumb will tell you.

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