The Vandelles are the latest to alter the mode and models of the modern canon's past crystallized rock traditions. Brooklyn's Jasno Suarez, Honey Valentine and Lindsey Ann take on those familiar paths littered by a history backlog of brother bands, boy-girl duos, mary chains, birthday parties, wedding presents, rebel motorcycle clubs, raveonette ghost riders or anyone else who found The Beach Boys to be way too soft. Premiering a listen to their album Strange Girls Don't Cry, Jasno, Honey and Lindsey get way ahead of you, get all aloha with you, taking you miles away into the city to a great nocturnal paradise where good boys don't lie and you may never see the summer again, as these Vandelles make their own way through you.
“All Aloha” is the Stratocaster echo-rider that is all open arms and opens the album with an icy embrace. The modus operandi at work here is a retro fitting pop rework of the 80s modern pop rebellions with a 90s savior faire lens of sensibility, as heard in full overt force on “Double H”. “Good Boys Don't Lie” links arms and hands in pastel blue anoraks and baggy fitted attire as if Reagan and Thatcher were still in power. But if the daisy-chained flower power song of the hour gives you too much of that morning glory sugar, “I'm Way Ahead of You” brings along all the motorbike king-chemical-confidence The Vandelles can exude. The band of drifters sound and journey only continues on “Into the City”, with stripped down blues strums that keeps the attitude derelict and destitute. The “Kazoo Reprise Miles Away” echoes the familiar progressions to Sonny & Cher's “Different Drum”, until the count off to “Miles Away” rekindles the rage and polytech riots that surrounded the noise-rock revolutions of 1985.
In a tradition ripped from the Reid brothers' “Kill Surf City” arrogance and conceits, the fatalist attitudes get air breezed through the unforgiving beach brush of “Never See the Summer Again”. Within the 70s strobe effects and flashes on “Nocturnal”, those understated era-not-given axe-rhythms rage like artifacts from the time altering sonics from Tim Hines and Tim Presley from their clock countering contributions through Tropical Popsicle and White Fence respectively. “Nocturnal” succeeds by banking on that place where the 60s surf rider sound affections took on a more precise and refined definition of project bliss mixing considerations. The title track presents an immediate and pop distilled presentation of their sound in a radio ready carnival of cascading gutars and organs. Closer “Way Through You” brings back those previous attributes to the traditional noise pop center and sends the listener through a reinvented portal where you stand on the precipice of the 1990s just waiting to happen.
The Vandelles' Strange Girls Don't Cry will be available July 9.