Rock/pop/electronica for the masses

Scarlet Blonde is a band that divides opinion like no other on the scene today. They don’t sit anywhere comfortably. With all the attitude of a ‘been there, done that’ rock star, but lacking something of the substance or experience. In a way, there’s something for everyone here - expert guitar playing, hammering drums, techno that would be at home at every continental festival… and it all works disturbingly well together.

Opening (you could argue only) track ‘There is No Black and White’ is very catchy. It could easily be a huge hit in the rock clubs globally. But there’s just something about it - whether it’s the single repeated lyric line, or continuous electronic buzzing, it just doesn’t sound like a complete song. As far as electronic/rock crossovers go, this is far and away the best thing I’ve heard, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to listen if I was going to hear it on a night out anyway.

Just one thing: why do we have to have five re-mixed (read: repeats) of the same track before we get to another song? Usually two songs would be a single release rather than an EP? I think it’s little touches like this that divide Scarlet Blonde not only from ‘corporate control’, but also from a more traditional rock audience. It’s rock for the single-loving clubbing generation, in attitude more than music.

The other track on the CD is ‘Tired’, which definitely benefits from a few more vocals. In fact it sounds like a modern Heart, or a rockier Goldfrapp. But it is just a demo, and that really shows. I thought the point of releasing a record was that you ended up with a finished article, not something you had to tack on the end for a B-side? Could just be me there.

I think part of Scarlet Blonde’s appeal is always going to be their larger-than-life private lives, which are mirrored in their OTT approach to music perfectly. But maybe I’m looking for something more in the music that the band itself can’t provide. It’s an instant adrenaline rush of pop/rock/electronica, but it doesn’t have me wanting to come back for another hit. Scarlet Blonde do deserve a hit with this. Maybe then they can afford the studio time to tidy up the B-side.