The Vaccines - English Graffiti
Anyone who caught The Vaccines' addictive between-albums teaser 'Melody Calling' would have built high expectations for third album English Graffiti. The single was a switch of direction from the more in-your-face post-punk standard to something breezier, with a killer chorus and guitar hook to match. More of the same would have been most welcome.
Unfortunately, what they've done is pursue their own musical fantasies without much regard to anyone else's. Gone are the post-sex hangovers to be replaced by singer Justin Young spending '(All Afternoon) In Love' atop a Soft Cell b-side, but without the interesting, twisted lyricism. Elsewhere, 'Want You So Bad' allows Young to showcase his cutesy high vocals to a sub-Belle & Sebastian number, while 'Give Me A Sign' shows off the band's new found love for MOR acts like Toto. Young recently said how frustrated he is at people not realising his songwriting strengths, overlooking the fact fans liked The Vaccines for a reason (throwaway garage pop songs in the main). This exhibits all the signs of an act getting famous and waking up one morning thinking they were David Bowie. English Graffiti might just be their rock 'n roll suicide.