Bleached – Welcome The Worms Review

 

The Califorian Clavin sisters are back with their second studio album Welcome The Worms which follows their strong 2013 debut Ride Your Heart. Now they recruited Micayla Grace as a bass player and this should add a sense of evolution to their lo-fi, surf rock sound. Their first album had many easily catchy tracks with easy melodies and structures of which they worked to maximum effect. But you know what they say about the second album…

‘Keep On Keeping On’ is a track full of purpose with a ringing riff and industrious bass line. It is rapid and aggressive, yet retains the keen pop sensibility and classic vocal harmonies. There is a fair bit more happening with the quantity of instrumentation too, with the organs heightening the hooks and the bass anchoring the rhythm. A fair few shifts in tone and structure keep hitting the point home that the group can hammer out infectious tunes. ‘Wednesday Night Melody’ is arguably a little weaker than their lead single, yet it still maintains the groups more direct and tangible sound with sturdier percussion and more prominent rhythm sections. This translates into a more stomp-rock track in this case, but it is lifted by sweeping harmonies and strong vocal performances in general.

‘Sour Candy’ is a track is musically a Weezer song that morphs gradually into a Killers track. Though on those terms it is nothing spectacular, the delivery is tight and energetic whilst Jen Clavin’s vocal performance shines particularly well here. Her assured tones and effortless shifts in that regard don’t steal away from her undeniable match for the music on this track. In a similar way, the lead and backing vocals for ‘Sleepwalking’ and their slight distortions meet nicely with the crashing instrumentation. ‘Chemical Air’ only hammers home the message that Jen’s vocals make the album for again the music is nothing unheard of. The final two tracks offer up smoother and deeper tones and a melodic ode to pop punk. The album is lacking a bit nuance which is largely reserved for the singles. Despite this, it is hard to deny the energy of the album which will translate brilliantly to their live performances. On top of this the vocal quality and tuneful nature of each track may leave a few earworms behind so a solid effort, but with room to improve for Bleached.

Bleached – Welcome The Worms – 7/10

Owen Riddleimage

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