Imagine if you will a boxing match between those two heavyweight muthas of MOR chick-rock, The Cranberries and Dido…”Here come the plucky Irish has-beens led by caterwauling Delores (“their bums, and their guns etc”) versus the Bridget Jones of coffee table rock Dido (“my arse is not for rent” or something).
They both stalk around the room deep in some serious hair flicking, while their three or four (who cares?) backing blokes slug it out in the predictably bored muso stakes. A punch is thrown with all the weight of a Lillet, and does not connect. Dido puts her guard up using a reinforced picture of Eminem. Delores cowers, looks at her dwindling record sales and does a runner. A victory? This is the audio version of that fight. Spineless and, despite the accompanying period paeans on this album, completely bloodless.
Wire Daisies hail from the wilds of Cornwall and have some heavy friends in Queen manager Jim Beach and Sawmills studio owner John Cornfield. However, address book cred does not necessarily make for good music. Resolutely hugging the white lines in the middle of the road, the Wire Daisies seem resolutely addicted to the trad limp rock of this their debut album.
All traditional song-writing values are present and oh so correct. Guitars are plucked, and �rock’ at the required moments, over bland rhythms that make Bilbo (sorry Dido) seem positively avant-garde. Other comparisons have to be Alanis Morissette (without the psychobabble), All About Eve (without the fey fairyfolk) and any number of sensitive souls warbling into the void about the injustice of being an empowered woman getting shat on.
Treana Morris does possess a bewitching set of pipes to conjure some melancholy beauty from these tired odes, but it’s a case of too little spread too thinly. The reliance on tired words takes any personality they may have to make this just another motorway services album for tired reps seeking an audio bubblebath requiring neither effort or involvement. The backing blokes pull very familiar sounds from their very familiar instruments with all the passion of Pot Noodle cookery.
The songs drift by in a myopic haze of feathery dullness, like having a pillow fight with Gareth Gates. The only redeeming grace comes in the form of the breezy Truth That Hurts and the light acoustic loveliness of Billy Boy. But despite these breathers, they have the temerity to inflict a laborious eight minute exercise in tedium on Come Winter Time which barely deserved to poke its head into the world at all. I’m Your Woman has a stab at being bluesy, with its contrived wails and warblings of being “your woman” before remembering she’s “a butterfly sometimes”. Pur-lease! Sort it out!
So, if you really want to possess another album of wailing chick rock be my guest. However if you own a pair of ears, throw in the towel and steer clear.