The Spins’ third single from their upcoming debut LP Not If, But When starts with a bass hook. Followed by a lyrical hook. Then it lifts a guitar hook out of the mix. Meanwhile, the drums repeat a galloping hook. “Vibe Police” is overloaded with addictive hooks that linger in your ear long after the song concludes.
The whole song is three minutes of danceable, singable fun. But the almost melancholy delivery of the heavy lyrics by Nick Coombs creates a delightful tension with the hyper-energetic guitar by Jimmy Barr. The starting lyrics, “what if I can’t explain all the reasons you are to blame,” feel almost out of place.
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But the bouncing bass by Phil Dunphy and driving percussion from Freddy Smith both help build the slow shift to higher vocal energy as the lyrics explore the singer’s relationship.
It’s at the bridge where the song really shifts. During the breakdown, each hook gets a spotlight again while claps drive everything forward. When the lyrics return, there are subtle tweaks from the first time the lines were delivered.
“I’ll walk with you anytime, anywhere,” the chorus now rings. The musical energies match and the hooks wiggle deeper into your brain all the more for it.
Stream “Vibe Police” below. Not If, But When drops June 26.
Ben is an advertising Madman who spends his days with words and music. When he’s not writing for his supper, he’s eating it at some of NYC’s most interesting restaurants.