steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Beware Fashionable Women

Self-titled CD


Genre: pop, indie pop, indie rock


Oct 6 2008

I guess "Pretty Girls Make Graves" was already taken. This L.A.-based pop band knows its way around a melody or two, and these ten songs give the public a taste of their potential. Several songs seem as if they are merely a step away from being truly great - just another melodic twist or a tighter instrumental flare could be all that stands in the way of BFW making some waves. Still, despite its shortcomings, much of this disc is a joy to experience.

Boppy "Girls On Fire" is fairly exemplary: it is a sweet, summery tune with an energetic pop-punk kick. Meanwhile, "Your Allegiance" basks in keyboard-heavy power-pop ala Ozma and some Weezer, while lyrically heart-warming "Courage" is the album's most polished moment, equally influenced by The Promise Ring and more straightforward pop music.

Of course, the highlights are just that - highlights - and this record isn't uniformly great. For example, "Obligatory Tattoo" misses the mark entirely, with a flat chorus that takes one listen to become annoyed with. As well, "The Great Corrupter (Of Youth)" starts off auspiciously enough with its blazing energy, but is quickly burned by a lack of real content (apart from a decent bridge.) Meanwhile, "Rock Bottom" is serviceable, but surprisingly bland for an album opener. Still, this album stays afloat because the bulk of it is quite buoyant. Even the less immediately memorable songs - Fratellis-esque "Parade," mellow and infectious "I'll Be the DJ," unpolished but catchy "Found" - catch the ear after a few listens. This record is unlikely to become your favourite, but as far as self-released debuts go, this is among the better productions.


youuuuuuuutube!: i'll be the DJ

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 10 tracks, distributed by the band, released 2008]