The Cribs - We Share The Same Skies
Dan Round 07/12/2009
When at the 2008 Reading and Leeds Festival Ryan Jarman announced that Johnny Marr, touring partner for a few months, would be joining as a proper member of the band (Jarman dubbed him affectionately as "Johnny Jarman"), many people anticipated what a collaboration between the Jarman clan and the former Smiths and seasoned session guitarist would sound like. As it happens “We Share The Same Skies”, the 2nd single from The Cribs' 4th album “Ignore The Ignorant”, is the one song on the record that perfectly sums up Marr's recording union with the band.
With a typical Marr opening riff evoking the spirit of “What Difference Does It Make?”, the song has the legendary guitarist's slick, textured sound stamped all over it. With Marr's gritty guitar chimes backed with the brothers' fast tempo rhythm and scathing scratches of guitar, Gary Jarman ironically embarks upon describing “a strange union”. As we all know by now, Cribs meet Marr is simply the same old caustic Cribs sound with a bit of trademark, complex jingle-jangle courtesy of the new fella, and this single is the epitome of it. Even a lyric in the chorus - “This town has got you down” - is somewhat reminiscent of The Smiths' “William, It Was Really Nothing” (“The rain falls hard on a humdrum town/this town has dragged you down”). Although some may find this striking similarity a bit too blatant, “We Share The Same Skies” is altogether an impressive and emotive lyric, full of archetypal sound bites, and perhaps one of the Jarmans' best to date.
Though the riff is catchy, already plugged well into the consciousness of football fans with its use on Match of the Day 2, the rest of the song remains less than memorable in comparison to many previous Cribs singles. The verse plods along nicely without really going anywhere exciting - sounding as if it could be taken from an album track as opposed to a single - while the chorus is hummable and distinct, but nevertheless fails to match the force of the main riff which lumbers uncomplimented in the background. While the new album has garnered generally positive reviews for its more accessible and mature sound, this song is perhaps too Cribs/Marr by numbers, lacking the impact and energy of the album's rifling first single “Cheat On Me”. It all seems a bit routine. Gary Jarman's voice comes across as slightly lazy sounding and weak as well, lacking the vocal bite the twins posses on ferocious, high octane older songs such as “Our Bovine Public” and “Hey Scenesters!”.
Despite its predictability, “We Share The Same Skies” is still a class above most of The Cribs' peers, and the song will fit well into the band's live set with an added vigour that perhaps it lacks on record. As a single however, the song does fall short in making the sharp, instant guitar pop impact that most Cribs singles achieve so profoundly.
Release date: 07/12/2009