The fourth album from the Watford trio , on the Acid Jazz label ,grabs you by the credentials from the opening and doesnt let go for its whole 39 mins and 10 seconds playing time.
Bold, confident and assured...theyve always had that...but its even more evident on this album how comfortable they are with the lyrics, the vocals and the musicianship. More consistent and "complete"
Whenever I think of these guys..I always think of progression. Each album takes them to a whole new level and sound....a pattern that continues here I am most glad to say.
They are often unfairly compared -too much I feel- to bands from different eras...and whilst we are all inspired by someone/something of course, they are still uniquely Spitfires.
Each album is different, the debut "Response " from 2015 is deeply personal for me and never far from the stereo...this one is looking to go the same way.
The stomp and wonderful brass on the new wave/punky and funky "Tear This This Place Right Down " hit me immediately...it does sound like something from the charts circa 82 ...but i dont mean that as any kind of insult. Not at all. Billys vocals bring it to "now " powerful and honest..sing like you mean it.
They are never afraid of singing about the hopelessness and despair of the world...but always with hope and optimism.
"How Could I Lie To You " is an instant classic, Johnny Marr-esque at times, a haunting tune with swirling echoed vocals and beautiful guitar..it fades out before coming back with a mini reggae influenced instrumental.
The menacing and edgy "Kings And Queens" was an instant winner on Banceys ears....the familiar tale of letting loose at the end of week, not defined by job or status...all equal as one. Its an anthem...Clash like....a catchy chorus with stabbing guitar and noisy feedback.
The reggae vibe returns on (Just Wont) Keep Me Down...a sequel of sorts to the previous track...the end of the night out, kebab for a way home, fights in the clubs and a sense of paranoia and disappointment..the comedown. Miserable it ain't tho, despite the gloom its upbeat, a real stomper singalong dancealong tune.
"Tower Above Me" has a touch of The Smiths ( i dont like to compare but I can hear it!) about it but "harder", it instantly sounds like a single to me with its infectious "la la las" , it should be playlisted in every "alternative nightclub" in the world...if there still is such a thing! Its cinematic, proper kitchen sink movie in a song.
Its a punchy, loud (mostly) and varied album covering all emotions, the joys and pitfalls of daily life with sirens,distortions, whistles, sax , rainfall, piano and so much more.
And thats all before the gloriously epic ,stunningly wonderful and gorgeous finale of the sympathetic "Make It Through Each Day" a tale of a relationship in doubt...it builds as it grows. A great one to end with.
Well done Spitfires...I cant wait to hear what comes next.. Get your copy of ‘Life Worth Living’ HERE
Photo Credit 📸 - Tony Briggs
Image Credit - The Spitfires
Review by Radio DJ Jonny Bance
Copyright © Mods Of Your Generation, Jonny Bance 2020, All Rights Reserved. Image/Photo Credit Tony Briggs & The Spitfires . No part of this review may be reproduced without the permission of the authors.