Once you pop, you can't stop!
'We Are The Pipettes' is crammed full of sprightly pop songs you can't help but want to dive head first into. First and foremost, like all good pop records it's all about getting people on the dance-floor. There are no syrupy ballads to wade through, no six minute epics or widdly guitar solos to contend with, just simple, hook laden, brilliant three minute songs virtually all of which could be singles. A lot has been made of the band's retro-ish tendencies and endeavours to turn back the musical clock to the pre-Beatles era. While it's true that the band gorge themselves on 50's / 60's pop (and Spector's 'Wall Of Sound') here there's a noughties edge to things from the slick production on 'Pull Shapes' to the lyrics which muse upon what it's like to be a teenage girl in 2006. There are tales of broken hearts ('It Hurts To See You Dance So Well'), tough school-yard friends ('Judy'), sex (errr... 'Sex' / 'Dirty Mind') and of course the old favourite, useless boys ('One Night Stand') because obviously some things never change.
'Your Kisses Are Wasted On Me' is the jewel in the band's crown, three minutes of perfect Tamla Motown pop, it sashays across the dance-floor wagging its finger in the direction of a hapless ex who just can't get the message that it's over. Behind the bluster and bravado though there are rare chinks in The Pipettes armour. 'It Hurts To See You Dance So Well' nurses a broken heart, lamenting the loss of a former love while the wonderful 'A Winter's Sky' displays a whimsical almost world weary quality – its skittering drum pattern providing the perfect backing for the girls best set of harmonies to date. The band quickly pushes these feelings to one side though for the remainder of the album and get back to the all important business of making us move our feet. The band (as is their prerogative) can be chaste one minute and flirtatious the next – 'Sex' is a rather frothy number that comes across as slightly flat when placed up against the likes of 'One Night Stand' whose call and response chorus stands out as one of the album's defining moments. Similarly impressive is the lusty 'Because It's Not Love' and 'ABC' (one of the oldest tracks here) a lively, knockabout affair.
While reviews of the band so far have concentrated largely on the visual / kitsch appeal The Pipettes (Riot Becki, Gwenno and Rosay) have, most have over-looked the contribution made by the band's back up group 'The Cassettes'. On 'We Are The Pipettes' they excel themselves in all areas turning the girls musical dreams into reality. Witness the glorious girl-group pop of 'Tell Me What You Want' and the beautiful arrangements that frame 'Why Did You Stay'. It's fitting that the album ends with the soaring 'I Love You' as it's the perfect ending to a dream debut.