Palma Violets

Danger In The Club

Written by: TL on 31/07/2015 15:37:37

With the release of their debut album "180", London rockers Palma Violets managed to find their way into the British indie rock hype machine, having people claiming them the best new this or that for a while back in 2013. Some chart positions and award nominations later, the band is now back with a new album titled "Danger In The Club", treating fans to another portion of their retro-inspired lad-rock. Libertines, Babyshambles and The Fratellis figure as likely comparisons, while the older British rock traditions of Beatles and The Rolling Stones are also probable influences in an expression that sounds like Palma Violets could not give fewer fucks about what has been happening stylistically in music since the mid-seventies.

"Danger In The Club" has a very old school rock sound then, with the band's guitar, bass, keys and drums sounding as fuzzy, warm and "authentic" as something you'd hear from the corner stage of your local pub. The vocals sound like they belong in a drinking establishment too, being performed in a rambling fashion and with a distinct British accent. Samuel Fryer on guitar and Alexander Jesson on bass both singing like rowdy barroom patrons who have been allowed to perform on stage with a stoically tight backing band, weaving their stories in mocking, drawling and shouted tones around the simplistic signature melody a given song builds around.

The result is most compelling in the album's title track, which gets going with a steady pace and key notes that sound like something from a trippy The Doors track. It has a hypnotic psych-like quality which suits grooving about in your apartment feeling like a lad among lads, while convincing yourself that the most supermodel-looking female you know is fascinated with your cheeky, boyish charm. Faster songs like "Hollywood (I Got it)" and "Secrets Of America" also appear catchy, but mostly due to shameless chorus repetition, and in these tracks especially, there's a feeling of British arrogance, seemingly saying "What do those 'murican's have that we could want right here in our perfect little pub".

Unless you are somewhat of an anglophile, though, "Danger In The Club" really does not have all that much to offer. As mentioned, any catchiness the songs achieve comes mostly from chorus repetition or derivative retro hooks, and it's hard to feel refreshed by the band's style, as they hardly bring anything to the market of rowdy British garage-rock that hasn't been done to death by any number of similar bands before the 'Violets. Simply put, the band's expression is most likely to appeal to listeners who hold on to romantic notions about how rock was at its best back when dad was young, and considering this due to this rejection of attempting any innovation, "Danger In The Club" is the kind of record that needs to get by on sheer charisma and song-writing consistency, neither of which it offers in more than average measures.

Download: Hollywood (I Got It), Danger In The Club, Secrets Of America
For The Fans Of: The Libertines, Babyshambles, The Fratellis
Listen: facebook.com/palmaviolets

Release date 04.05.2015
Rough Trade

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