Boston songwriter/producer Scott Janovitz left us wondering what his next big move would be after Dragstrip Courage in the early 2000s. The answer is the Russians, a studio-riffic expression of Janovitz's musical fancies, skills, and resourcefulness. Like a modern-day Sir Douglas, Janovitz takes his beloved (American-influenced) UK music and double-distills it back through the American lens. With its velveteen harmonies, "You Know" gives Glaswegian folk rock the requisite American twang and big jumbo Gibson strum. The retro-rootsy allure is hard to miss. Putting on his producer hat, Janovitz cues up a meaty snare sample with "Sober and Upsetting" — an eager slice of Bolan-esque Britpop, complete with tweaking moogs and an elegiac acoustic coda. The Russians have a patriotic indie spirit, but their high production ideals lead them along their own path. And in the age of the single, they might have been better served by crafting a few A/B-side honeys out of this set. The finest moments reintroduce one of the most-promising multi-musical svengalis of pop tunes Boston has seen in a long while.
THE RUSSIANS + MIKE GENT + JOHN POWHIDA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT | Lizard Lounge, 1617 Mass Ave, Cambridge | July 10 | 21+ | $7 | 617.547.0759 or lizardloungeclub.com