Written By: PSG
Label: Nickel and Dime – Rating:
Gollygeewhiz! Ladies pop out the sexy sweater sets, and gentleman, slick back that hair of yours — it’s time for a Sock Hop! Miss Derringer’s unexpected sound is classic 50’s pop with a modern edge. The songs all have a very similar quality, which makes for a very cohesive album, but almost too much, it’s hard to tell where one song ends and the next begins without looking at the music player. The lead singer does not use her vocals to their full potential until well into the album – a great detriment. As soon as she does, however, they are adorable and worth the listening. This is an album that’s sweet and fluffy — nothing too deep. There is no over-arching theme or message, but the awesome retro sound would be great for a party.
“Click Click, Bang Bang” was a rather poor choice to open the album with. Maybe it could have been a strong song—if the vocals were clear. The fuzzy sound and the overly repetitive nature of the track really brought the opening down. “Bulletproof Heart” could slow down the guitar a bit. The lyrics’ rhyming is cute, but the delivery lacks in a way that’s hard to pinpoint. The vocals’ approach to higher notes adds depth to the song. “Black Tears” brings on the real 1950’s American Dream, Beach Blanket Bingo sound.
Particularly notable is “All The Pretty Things” which starts off with some male vocals. It has a totally Johnny and June sound (or a Joaquin and Reese sound. Have you seen Walk the Line? Excellent movie, highly recommendable) and a warble on the man’s voice that is hot and deeply affecting. “Tell Me So” has some pretty decent lyrics, which are so-so on the album as a whole. The line “first time you lied I thought I would die, now it just feel like every other night” sounds wonderful when sung, hitting all the right rhymes and sounds of the words to make a good song. “Heartbreaks and Razorblades” is actually rather funny, given that it’s about suicide. The “oo-OO-ing” is so cute and era-appropriate for the 50’s sound. The album ends much better than it began, with a sad sounding song, aptly title “Mausoleum.” An excellent note to leave off on.