The Struts

YOUNG&DANGEROUS

(Polydor)

 

 

I’m not overly familiar with The Struts I must admit. I have read about them in the music press and how when they opened for the Foo Fighters the band’s frontman Dave Grohl stated that “they’re the best opening band they’ve ever had” and that the rock legend that is Alice Cooper made a cameo in one of their music videos but that is really it. So when I was sent their forthcoming second album ‘YOUNG&DANGEROUS’ for review I wanted to give it a listen and pressed play…

Opener ‘Body Talks’ has a fuzzy guitar tone courtesy of Adam Slack whilst Luke Spiller (Lead Vocalist) seems frantic as he bellows out the chorus in an energetic manner. It hits you straight away as an opening album track should but I’m not sure if the track is strong lyrically.

‘Primadonna Like Me’ hears Spiller in full Freddie Mercury mode vocally whilst Adam Slack (guitar), Jed Elliott (bass) and Gethin Davies (drums) keep it the song chugging along at a fast pace. I’m reminded at times of ‘Pump It Up’ by Elvis Costello and The Attractions and early T-Rex and I draw the conclusion that The Struts are the glam-rock band for the 2018 audience. If it is not already this song will be a live favourite for sure.

‘In Love With A Camera’ has me posing the question “Are The Struts fans of the Who’s ‘Baba O’Riley’? as Elliott and Davies provide a strong rhythmic backing. The subject matter of the song being the selfie means that if they release this as single then it opens up the option of a slick Selfie campaign with their growing fanbase taking selfies with their copies of the album on CD and Vinyl which can then be uploaded to social media. Just a thought lads…

On ‘Bulletproof Baby’ I can hear keyboards but have no idea who is playing them as the ‘call to arms’ type chorus rings out throughout. Also, I’m still not sure who or what ‘Bulletproof Baby’ is so this track stumps me a bit.

‘Who Am I’ feels like a Scissor Sisters demo which didn’t get used because they couldn’t get permission to sample ‘Miss You’ by The Rolling Stones but it does work with Spiller’s powerful voice.

‘People’ has a fluid drum sound that really boosts the number but the chorus is slightly over-repetitive.

The punchy ‘Fire (Part 1)’ accompanies track twelve ‘Ashes (Part 2)’ which for me is a highlight because of the slower approach in particular the subtle piano intro. It is this tune which showcases the light and shade of The Struts.

‘Somebody New’ has this lush acoustic guitar and is a sing-along and sway side to side number at their live shows but then we get this arena Queen anthem production and just when I think as a listener I’m beginning to understand who The Struts are they have this Brian May-esque guitar and I’m back to square one.

‘Tatler Magazine’ has Spiller tell us about his desire to be in Tatler Magazine, a British literary and society journal launched in 1709 and is still going strong.

‘Freak Like You’ begins with a list of characters which we are briefly introduced to including “Bobby built a spaceship in his backyard, Susan’s never works for free, Sam ain’t got a sense of fashion he’s a lot like you and me.” Unfortunately I can’t help but laugh at this because it reminds me of when Jeremy Corbyn stands up in Prime Minister’s questions and tells us about “Jane in Harrow, Mark in Weston Super Mare and Roger in Milton Keynes.” Besides which, this has been done in Lou Reed’s ‘Walk On The Wild Side’.

The closing track is ‘Body Talks’ feat. Kesha and she was the perfect choice for this number as her voice blends with Spiller’s perfectly.

In conclusion, they are fine musicians and if you have a Freddie Mercury hole in your life (no laughing at the back) then The Struts are perfect the band for you. But they do come across as curators of glam-rock rather than creators of anything truly fresh.

Glenn Sargeant



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(Thanks to Pete Sargeant and the team at Wilful Publicity for help with this article)

The Struts' second studio album 'YOUNG&DANGEROUS' is released on Friday 26th October 2018 on Polydor. 

For more information visit their official website here: http://bit.ly/2CtaiDM

In addition, The Struts will embark on a February 2019 UK Tour. 

The tour will visit the following venues:

Saturday 16th February 2019 -  Leeds University Union, Leeds, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2C7Up6g

Sunday 17th February 2019 - Rock City, Nottingham, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/1Kk77gZ

Monday 18th February 2019 - Newcastle University Students Union, Newcastle, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2wi6AYJ

Tuesday 19th February 2019 - The Garage, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2ib7iyV

 

 

 

Friday 22nd February 2019 - SWX, Bristol, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2gTCtTF

Saturday 23rd February 2019 - Manchester Academy, Manchester, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2h2alet

Sunday 24th February 2019 - O2 Institute Birmingham, Birmingham, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/2a1lCcl

Tuesday 26th February 2019 - O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, London, United Kingdom http://bit.ly/29St0ac