Japandroids Near To The Wild Heart Of LifeThe poetic nonsense that made Japandroids’ first two albums so exquisitely inscrutable is gone on Near To The Wild Heart Of Life.

In its place is naked pop lyricism about bars and cars and last calls and long nights that only furthers their goal of becoming the pop-punk Bruce Springsteens. Some things stay the same: drummer David Prowse is still there, wailing on the tubs and whoa-ohing on the mics, and North American highways still set the scene for King’s search for meaning. But musically, they broaden way out: around their usual power chord barrage is everything from country jangle to synth-rock. If Celebration Rock mirrored the optimism of its time, Wild Heart mirrors the mood of its era too: more sombrr, searching, and finding hope in small victories.

Near To The Wild Heart Of Life is out now via Inertia.

Buy Now at JB Hi-Fi