Under Review

Various Artists

Imagine the Shapes (What’s Your Rupture?)

Review By Brock Thiessen


“It’s all about entertainment, and it’s all about satisfaction”—a line from Love is All that could easily become the motto for the NYC-based imprint, What’s Your Rupture? In a few quick years, a string of excellent releases has pushed the label to the forefront of the indie-pop revival. But so far the label has stuck almost exclusively to seven and 12-inch wax, excluding fans whose parents were too square, or hip, to pass down the turntable. Now, What’s Your Rupture? has widened their audience by releasing Imagine the Shapes, a compilation that gathers the label’s first four singles on one convenient CD. Thankfully, the label is the type that follows a strict aesthetic, which makes the disc play more like a cohesive album than some disjointed compilation. Each band—Love is All, caUSE co-MOTION!, The Long Blondes and Comet Gain—beats out the type of scrappy indie-pop once heard blaring from bands like The Popguns, The Wedding Present and Television Personalities.

To set the tone, Sweden’s Love is All begin with the sax-infused, guitar-frenzied workout of their stunning Make Out, Fall Out, Make Up seven-inch, showcasing three of the strongest tracks from their full-length, Nine Times That Same Song. The label’s only American act, caUSE co-MOTION!, follows with their jangly brand of herky-jerky rock ‘n’ roll, where clean, choppy guitars briskly lay four tracks to rest. Next comes Sheffield’s The Long Blondes, who wrap Orange Juice, Blondie and Spectorisms into a disco party destined for mass consumption. UK vets Comet Gain wrap up Imagine the Shapes with their torrid union of mod-punk and Northern Soul, a formula previously perfected on their grossly underrated album, Réalistes. As the compilation spins to a stop, it’s easy to walk away feeling both entertained and satisfied.