Album Reviews

The Motorettes – The Motorettes

(Kitchenware) UK release date: 21 August 2006

Having the steadily nurtured their reputation since signing to Kitchenware in 2005, The Motorettes are set to put their money where their mouths are, and – with any number of ‘Single of the Week’ accolades already under their undoubtedly stylish belts – it’s a fairly safe bet.

With an allegiance to “great melodies and even greater harmonies” worn proudly on their sleeves, Robin, Jack and Jed slot into the current North East crop with ease: while the inflection is not as pronounced as that of The Futureheads or Maximo Park, the practice and principles are generally the same, the result of which is a timeless-yet-digestible record.

Sounds crash into earshot at high speed with the vigorous Super Heartbeats, a track every bit as brief and exciting as its title suggests; consolidation becomes the name of the game as early as track two as You Gotta Look The Part takes its own stock of such an approach with even greater aplomb, the rapid-fire harmonies and interplay taking The Motorettes’ sound to distinctive heights.

But can such breathless antics be carried throughout 12 tracks without a dip in quality? Go! Go! Gadget Girl’s female-infused, hand-clapping enthusiasm suggests yes, while Heart… stop… ing, with it’s descending-chord crescendo, is more than just a clever song title.

The lads’ unwavering commitment to an uncluttered pop sensibility serves them well throughout their debut long player, but is not necessarily the indication of a flawless effort: whereas most great midsections serve up a noticeable difference, I’m On Fire and Baby Come Home fail to match the high standards set. The suggestion is that, perhaps, The Motorettes should switched stance rather than try to outdo themselves ad infinitum (they do with I Hate To See You Cry, in fact, but it’s too little too late).

Still, the LP pulls more rabbits from the hat before the bitter end, including the bold, start-stop I Am Blisters and long-stepping, emo-tinted closer Vs The Mountain. In the end, it’s not quite enough to catapult another North East band to national acclaim, but will surely be more than enough to generate a wink and a nod towards Robin, Jack and Jed’s commendable and authentic antics.

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The Motorettes – The Motorettes