Title: Never Grow
Catalogue Number: No catalogue number
Review Format: CD
Release Year: 2008
A-lix. Interesting name for a band. No idea what it means but a bit of research determines that A-lix are a duo with a drum machine and from the first song it is clear that they are not afraid to turn the volume up.
Let's take a stab at describing the A-lix sound first. Remember those science lessons where they threw a chunk of sodium into a jar of water and it went boom! That is a pretty good way of describing the manic energy on show here. The songs throw themselves at you. They don't wait in the shadows for you to find them. Take "Ignition" for example. It opens with a chant of "armies of lovers…" before some maxed out, overdriven guitar arrives to slap you out of your aural apathy. "Never Grow" - our favourite song from the album - likewise rattles the old chandeliers as that drum machine thuds mercilessly in the background. Any song that name checks Ian Curtis is just fine with us!
Maybe it was the continuous use of a drum machine that made us think of the eighties and the music of that time. Thoughts of the Timbuk 3 getting locked in a studio with Marc Almond and Guesch Patti filled our head. That sense of style that could never come from Britain. The dramatic delivery. The sheer directness seasoned with undeniable, if offbeat, continental flair. "A Practical Course about Love" has oddly obscure lyrics that don't seem to mean what you think they mean but, as you ponder that, you end up singing along anyway. "Under the Sun" starts off all indie pop before veering off into a deranged, psychedelic influenced guitar solo. Like we said, this album is never dull and whilst the A-lix sound is simple, it works well.
Bluesbunny reviews a lot of albums. Some albums are just too perfect, too contrived with all the soul surgically removed leaving only cold perfection. A-lix's album may not be perfect but at least you won't forget you heard it. That is the important thing. Energy, enthusiasm and a dash of style are what really matter when it comes to making music and Vincent and Lorena - for they are A-lix - have plenty of that. Well worth attending one of their live gigs as well, by the way.
Available by worldwide mail order from CD Baby.
April 11, 2008
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