Sunday, November 16, 2008


St Helens have groove n’ swagger, there’s no doubt, but this isn’t the feelgood post-punk summer jam everyone was hoping for. It’s really only going to soundtrack your drive ‘round the block to get an ice cream; don’t try pushing it to get you to the pool, because it’s gonna be like Groundhog Day and everyone will get frustrated and put on the only other CD in the car, which will probably be Everclear’s 'Sparkle and Fade', and that’ll be fun while you’re belting out Heroin Girl but you’ll all feel dirty afterwards.

Here’s the thing: this goes nowhere. There’s a lot to like, with the bored vocals, off-kilter drums and distracted guitars, but you get to the end and want to skip back to check that you didn’t miss the good bit. It hums along, builds, kinda, then drops back, builds a little again, then hits 2:30 and calls it a day. If it wasn’t for the ridiculous 20 second outro (new rule for bands: if your outro is more than 10% the length of the actual song, cut it), I’d think the middle eight, bridge, chorus and final verse got sheared off the end in a freak accident. Unfortunately not. It’s still completely worth checking out, though, because if I didn’t emphasise this enough, it sounds killer, and sometime soon St Helens are going to slay. They just don’t yet.

[St Helens MySpace]

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