Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Chains Of Love - Strange Grey Days

Album review by KevW

This article also appears on http://www.soundsxp.com


If you have a taste for vintage sounds such as 60s soul stompers, the beat explosion and garage rock, lustrous Spectorish girl-pop, the pop-punk spirit of bands like Blondie and The Pretenders and the luscious, glimmering indiepop of Sambassadeur or Camera Obscura, then join the club. And while you're here lend your superbly calibrated, highly tuned ears to Vancouver's Chains Of Love, a band who've grabbed the baton of retro pop and are running with it as though it's their life's mission.

Of course this sonic fusion of past heroes is nothing new, especially around these parts, but Chains Of Love have us a teensy bit more excited than usual, thanks to a few choice components. Firstly you have Nathalia Pizarro's exquisite set of pipes that posses a powerful vibrato inherited from Ronnie Spector; she doesn't just sing these songs, she commands them, and this is despite the wash of sound surrounding her in the mix. Then there's the production; treble heavy, filled with percussion and spangly guitar lines that are left raw and shrill. It's like Mr Spector letting his hair down (or taking it off more likely), ditching the orchestra and digging The Raveonettes instead of Wagner.

It would all be a somewhat hollow gesture without the songs to back it up. Just one listen to, say, 'In Between' or 'I'd Rather Be Crying' and you're in hook, line and sinker. The swirls of organ and Northern Soul stylings of 'All The Time' show these are no one-trick ponies either. 'Lies Lies Lies' begins like a Shangri-Las melodrama, in fact 'Strange Grey Days' isn't short on drama at any point and this guarantees that you never get bored, there's never a dull moment. This debut UK album is the combination of an EP and a single release and is the sound of a band just getting started, and if they're this good already just imagine what they could create when they hit their stride. At this moment in time, Chains Of Love are one of the most exciting prospects out there.









Chains Of Love's website

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