Dum Dum Girls may be an "indie" band, but they know the value of promotion after releasing two prior albums, I Will Be and Only in Dreams. And so, with such experience under their belts, it only made sense that they would debut the first single from their third record, Too True, through the retail platform that is H&M. "The Lost Boys and Girls Club" came out in fall of 2013, and was quickly followed with another single, "Too True to Be Good," which was first made available via V Magazine.
Too True opens with "Cult of Love," a witchy, cerebral track in which lead vocalist Dee Dee Penny declares "I belong to the cult of love." It is a cult none of us can help succumbing to in the long run and, in fact, maybe we only belong to it because "you know all my secrets, you know all my lies." The comfortableness you share with someone ultimately makes it impossible to escape your two-person cult. Penny invokes the lingo of possession with verses like, "We touch beneath our skin." The second track, "Evil Blooms," sounds oh so very much like The Strokes and spouts lyrical profundities masked behind a hyper-paced rhythm. Penny paints the portratit of some sort of tragic wild child as she sings, "Evil blooms just like a flower/It's time to judge, it's time to cast endless stones/Why be good?/Be beautiful and sad/It's all you've ever had."
"Rimbaud Eyes" may be this generation's answer to "Bette Davis Eyes." The lazy lilt of Penny as she earnestly notes, "You've got Rimbaud eyes" could either mean she loves you or hates you. The pace continues to slow with the concerned "Are You Okay?" The melancholic tone gives fellow band members Jules Medeiros, Sandy Vu and Malia James a chance to demonstrate their integral Dum Dum Girls sound. Meanwhile, Penny laments, "I know just what I'm doing/But what is this that I'm pursuing/You say, 'Are you okay?'" Penny then speaks from an empathizer's point of view with the reassurance, "What do you feel?/I feel it too."
The wistful "Too True to Be Good" is filled with soft, near whispers of lyrics like "Won't you take me away?/I wanna feel something today." As the dividing point on the album, there is a noticeable shift toward a more sophisticated sound as Too True progresses. Producer Richard Gottehrer (of Blondie and Richard Hell fame) unveils the Dum Dum Girls at their toughest, yet most vulnerable. "In the Wake of You"--an excellently titled breakup song--picks up the beat with gentle, reserved vocals that express, "Day in, day out/I'm always alone.../Tonight I feel lonely in the wake of you." The sadness and strength conveyed in such lyrics makes this one of the most notable songs on Too True.
The following track, "The Lost Boys and Girls Club" is rather ironical when considering it was released through H&M. It is, one would like to believe, the Dum Dum Girls' way of playing a none too subtle joke on a corporation that prides itself on lively, happy clientele--which is negated by Penny's admission, "The void in my head/The hole in my heart/I feel them with things which all fall apart." Could some of those things possibly be a wardrobe from H&M? Subsequently, "Little Minx" exudes a fun and carefree vibe, with Penny acknowledging that every little minx (both literal and metaphorical) has a thought process that amounts to: "What I see defines what I think."
The second to last track, "Under These Hands," possesses a grunge vibe that serves as an incredible example of the Dum Dum Girls' range in terms of musical style (though many would be quick to disagree). Again, the lyrics of the song contain an almost philosophical erudition as Penny drones, "Under these hands hide strings of light.../Under these hands, under these hands, I hold my heart." Not wanting to let you think they're quite so emotionally assailable, the Dum Dum Girls conclude their short but sweet album with "Trouble is My Name." Employing the method they're most fond of--asking questions--Penny rehashes, "I had a vision, I wanted to be dead/I had a vision, destruction ruled/Trouble is my name, is it your name too?" Usually, it is. But after listening to Too True, one can only have warm, fuzzy feelings of love.