White Arrows’ debut album arrives amongst a slew of agitated synth stabs, atmospheric swashes, and drooling vocals. Opening shot Roll Foreverʼs jerky intro of effected drum and dirty guitar drifts into a dreamy verse that then jerks you into the jittery chorus refrain “You know, I know, you know itʼs something good!”
There starts the problem. I donʼt know that it is something good. Songs like Get Gone and Sail On prick the ears with angular and really quite fetching guitars, which unfortunately are downtrodden by generic, almost pre-programmed synth twiddling. Songs like I Can Go, Settle Down and Getting Lost pretty much see the electronics left at home and White Arrows seem to shine a little brighter for it.
Mickey Churchʼs voice becomes the instrument that guides his bands’ songs, and on occasion thatʼs no bad thing. It can get a little Richard Ashcroft sometimes, both lyrically and stylistically, but again, no bad thing. There are bands out there doing the electro/psychedelic thing so much better, however, and one can only hope that White Arrows regroup, rethink and come back playing to their natural talents.
Getting Lost is a case in point. Itʼs a great song, where falsetto vocals are pushed along by lovely percussion, slightly dirty guitar strummings and perfectly placed noises. More please! We end here with Fireworks of the Sea and it feels like the band have found their feet, no unnecessary bleeps or squeaks, and the lingering feeling that album number two could be a good starting point for White Arrows. Until then though…