The Infadels - We Are Not The Infadels
Britain, probably more than any other country, has a long list of genre busting bands - groups who are not content to sit in their own little pigeon-hole but would much prefer to shift their sound from influence to influence. The Prodigy, The Chemical Brothers, heck, even The Beatles, have all attempted to bring sounds together, crossing rock, punk, dance, soul, smashing and mashing the whole works. Occasionally, it achieves that golden moment - when the rock kids and the dance boys get together around a record and get their rocks off. This is what The Infadels seem to want to do - have a massive party, and invite everyone.
From the opening track, this intent is clear. The five piece open with the tight, snappy "Love Like Semtex". Problem is though, it's just the wrong side of Jesus Jones - a rock song with the keyboard switched on, shouty vocals, its just a shade away from irritating. Next track "Can't Get Enough", is heaps better, a bouncing, groovy song, slamming along full of percussive flair and ideas. Reggae-tinted "TopBoy" follows, and it's ok, as is "Girl That Speaks No Word", a very conventional pop song, full of melody.
"Jagger 67" though is awful. It plods along like a poor mans Gang of Four and sounds like a mess. Its not the worst song on the album though - that award definitely goes to "Sunday", a tacky piece of early 90's Shamen style dance. Album closer "Stories from the Bar" though is strong stuff, and ends things well.
Although they might think they are bringing something new to the table, to my ears, The Infadels are not. All this album did was remind me of all those early 90's dance/rock bands. EMF in particular springs to mind - that awkward fusion of guitars and keyboards that sometimes worked with amazing effect and sometimes just didn't. That is the main problem I found with this album - parts of it, particularly single "Can't Get Enough", really sound fresh and new and get me excited. The trouble for me was, that didn't happen enough.