An album that fluctuates from excellence to brilliance, About Girls from Hatcham Social is a vibrant and fully engaging feast of pleasure and creativity. The second album from the UK alternative band is a full meal for the senses with starters of inviting hypnotic hooks, a full course of deep stirring ingenuity and a dessert of delicious melodic treats. The release is a completely infectious collection of thirteen impressive and deliriously uplifting songs revelling in a wealth of imaginative and heartfelt songwriting.
The London based quartet first drew firm attention with their debut album You Dig The Tunnel, I’ll Hide The Soil of 2009, receiving album of the week or month status in the likes of Vice, NME, and Artrocker. Now with a revamped line-up of Toby Kidd (guitar/vocals), Finn Kidd (drums), David Fineberg (bass) and Jerome Watson (synth/guitar) the band look set to grab even stronger and further acclaim once About Girls released through Fierce Panda unveils its irresistible charms upon the masses.
The album simply ripples with pulsating melodic and mesmeric ingenuity from start to finish, often bringing a familiarity that nestles very happily within the ear. The songs are all fresh and unique but come like old heart borne friends to make the album an instantaneous pleasure to fall within. The band has an instinctive feel and grasp on catchy melodies and hooks that avoid cheap tricks and obvious lures to pull in the sense. Hatcham Social alongside the likes of JacksonsWarehouse and Innercity Pirates have an organic touch which takes the listener on an exhilarating ride to reveal new ‘sights’ along aural journeys other artists have made bland.
NY Girl opens up proceedings with a deep pulsating bass vein throbbing behind incisive attention seeking guitars. The song is a dirty garage slice of indie rock ‘n’ roll that drips a confidence to its swagger and highly charged sound. The song starts things off with a formidable intensity and might that actually belies the following variety of essential sounds to come. Having opened up ears and grabbed full focus from the senses the band step back into the crystalline melodic grace of Nicola Tells Me next. Carrying a Lloyd Cole/Josef K like retro sound the song sways with cascades of firebug light and touching warmth.
Within two songs the diversity of the band has been unveiled something the album repeatedly impresses with. The likes of the wonderful Lois Lane with its mesmeric stomp, the contagious Like An Animal a song you simply cannot resist joining in with, and the dynamic Little Savage all take the emotions on an eager and fulfilled dance. The glory of the album does not stop there, the band giving extra keen flavours with songs like the scintillating I Look Like A God When You Dance with its striking Tom Petty feel and the Costelloesque All Summer Long. From beginning to its last dynamic note, About Girls is a real deep pleasure which is hard to leave even once it has left you.
For all the great sounds and creativity on the album the highlight is the simply breath taking track Would You. The song is stunning, an enthused infection that wraps itself joyful around the ear and beyond. With rambling guitars, playful rhythms and expressive vocals all leading to the anthemic chorus surrounded by glittering electronic bedazzlements, the song is a summer stroll for the heart.
Hatcham Social has in About Girls released the soundtrack for your emotions, a weave of dazzling light and inspired melodies to lift every dark corner of the heart and a companion for every aspect of your day. The album is a definite contender for album of the year and just waiting for you to fall into its welcoming arms.