Baddies – Build (album review)

Baddies, the indie rock back from Southend, EssexEssex four-piece Baddies burst onto the indie-rock scene in 2009 with their critically acclaimed debut album ‘Do The Job’, having made their name by playing more festivals in one summer than any other band in Europe (32, since you asked).

The success of that record was built on classic hard-rock riffs, mindlessly catchy choruses and a staccato vocal style that was almost robotic.

This sound drew favourable comparisons withThe Futureheads and early Queens of the Stone Age. On this, their difficult second album, the band has gone for a more synth-led sound, largely jettisoning the riffs in favour of slow-burning melodies.

On producer duties, in comes Sean Genockey, who has previously worked with the Manic Street Preachers. This new approach doesn’t always hit the mark as directly or consistently as their earlier stuff, but the few tracks where they manage to pull it off are really effective. Think ‘Humbug’-era Arctic Monkeys and you’re not far off.

The yearning for reinvention is made blatantly clear on the first two tracks, as lead singer Michael Webster tells us: “Underneath the surface, I’m not feeling quite the same, I need rewiring” and “I’m going to build my very own man-made man”. From here onwards…

To read the rest of this review on Virgin Red Room, click here.

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