Georgia's The Whigs come as close to anyone to filling that void left by the extra-competent and enjoyable era of 90s alt-rock that provided we enthusiasts with the opportunities to delight in bombastic yet substance heavy rock and roll. With their 3rd album In The Dark the trio is still packing a punch without giving themselves away to undue pretension and, while not necessarily changing the landscape of the modern rock scene or proving themselves as adventurous as their contemporaries, manage to deliver a solid slab of rock music to shake, boogie and, occasionally, daydream to.
From the muddy skronk and rattle of the opening "Hundred/Million" to the beach towel summer vibe of "Automatic" this album sounds like the Beach Boys album the Screaming Trees never made. There's no hiding the trio's endearment of influences from the not so distant past as they continually dial up big guitars, in your living room drums and thumpy, melodic basslines, all of which represent the best traits of the most enjoyable 90s rock. "I Don't Even Care About The One I Love" sounds almost like an intriguing cross-pollination of My Morning Jacket and The Ronnettes and produces one of the catchiest moments of the album.
Despite, lead vocalist/guitarist Parker Gispert's constant use of the words "kill," "die" or "dying" this album coasts along on a palpable feel good vibe complete with grinning harmonies and breezy laments. "Kill Me Caroline" is an obvious pipe-dream shot at mass appeal and, while definitely the most clumsy entry on the disc, still keeps with the good time feelings found abroad.
The Whigs world on In The Dark is one in which southern traditions rub elbows with dark desires of the heart yet find transcendence by reveling in a youthful abandon that keeps things feeling fun and properly rambunctious. Truly, this album is music for wearing your flannel shirt poolside while dreaming of a life in which you don't have to grow up and the summer sun never subsides.