Monday, 23 June 2008

Johnny Foreigner – Waited Up ‘Till It Was Light

What an album this is thirteen songs of pure Indie rock fight pop anthems. JoFo are one of my favourite new UK bands around and their debut album doesn’t disappoint. There sound is some where close to Los Camesinos! But less twee-core and more fight pop, which is a massive relief, in-fact they can now start a fight pop axis of evil with new label mates Dananananaykroyd at Best Before. They also remind me of a warmer friendlier organic sounding Bloc Party in places. There is a bit of Sonic Youth and Fugazi in JoFo too. Their EP Arcs Across The City was sublime and some rewordings of the songs feature on Waited Up ‘Till It Was Light. The production on the album polishes the already outstanding tunes into a joyful hit ridden beast. This doesn’t take away any of their raw power or DIY style either. I love the vocals, which are much easier to hear now compared to the demos. The play off of the male and female vocalists works brilliantly and adds a real youthful energy to the songs. Waited Up ‘Till It Was Light could well be this years Indie album of choice, maybe this years Silent Alarm.

It’s been a while since I first heard this record on the leak, and it excited me very much, now I have the CD in my very hands that love comes right back at you like a sugar rush. My love for JoFo almost waived but putting Waited Up ‘Till It Was Light on again soon dispels this mental train of thought. I will get onto the tunes in just one moment but first, what about that artwork? Well I really like it, freaky ghostly cartoons loom over the Birmingham landscape. The inlay is sweet with its postcard style pictures just like the front cover but with song lyrics printed on the back. Just perfect for JoFo fan boys and girls to look over anytime they please.

Every single one of the tunes is a stand out in my opinion, the whole album oozes with fight pop brilliance, just good old loud indie rock pop tunes full of melody and guitars. Our Bipolar Friends, Eyes Wide Terrified and Salt, Peppa and Spinderella are maybe my absolute favourites. The drum machine and synth throb sets Spinderella off brilliantly before it kicks of in style. The production by American hardcore/rock/hip-hop producer Machine is really good and lets the band shine through really well, and manages to dodge all those twangy twee sounds English indie pop is so in love with right now. The lyrics are full of humour about nights out and all sorts of city living pass times. They seem to have a love hate relationship with Birmingham and I think we can all relate to that with our hometowns.

Johnny Foreigner are an adorable band go and enjoy them at their shows, buy them a some gin and sweets, say hello, then dance and smile.

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