It has been a good week for pianos here in the hell of a thousand reviews with The Claudettes adding their new album “Dance Scandal at the Gymnasium” to an ever growing list of keyboard driven music that might even be classed as beneficial for the soul.
On the evidence of this album, there would seem to be two sides to The Claudettes as most of the songs on this album have the mark of a band that had decided to conquer the city festival in the classier parts of the world with the manic barrelhouse mania of Johnny Iguana leading the band forward on a search and destroy mission into showtune territory in search of the kind of drama that can only ever exist on stage. Your ears will likely regard the title track and “Utterly Absurd” as irrefutable proof of that. However, this album also contains rather more delicate moments such as the exquisitely wistful “Pull Closer To Me” that, with the intoxicating voice of Berit Ulseth out front, soon becomes the song that will steal your heart.
“Dance Scandal at the Gymnasium” is, unsurprisingly therefore, an album with hipster appeal but, for those of us with a heart, it is what resides beneath the fast-flowing waves of musical energy that will make our day. That, in case you haven’t guessed already, is soul.