Enjoyable Slice Of Indie Magic
In many ways Autokat's album title sums them up perfectly. To the naively innocent 'Late Night Shopping' means simply a trip to the local shopping centre out of normal hours, to the more street wise it means going out and thieving. It's these two diverse sides that Autokat appear to openly embrace; on the surface their songs gravitate to pop, all catchy beats and irresistible hooks but lurking beneath is a more menacing and sinister side to the music, giving this debut album from Manchester's up and coming act a promisingly enjoyable slice of indie magic.
Opening proceedings with a wave of guitars and a relentless drum beat, 'Shot' finds Autokat in full darkly melodic stance, offering intelligent punk indie that twists and pounds energetically. From this Autokat manage to skilfully avoid the pitfalls of becoming just another guitar based post–Britrock band as they continue to unveil hit after melodic hit. Whilst the likes of 'Dish Out' finds the Mancunians in full energetic punk flow as they zoom by in a blur, 'Get Off The Bar' in turn brandishes sing along choruses and guitar solos that are begging to be unleashed on an arena stage. On top of this Manchester's best kept secret somehow manage to pull off a ballad that for all intents and purposes seems to be about bowling. A brilliantly genius metaphor or simply a song to prove that you can turn any subject matter into a great song, who knows, in reality 'Bowling' is a sombre little ditty that soon gets under your skin and into your heart. 'Innocence' on the other hand is a rampaging guitar fuelled stampede that bulldozes past, leaving in its wake the crashing drums and seething riffs of 'Fill Your Cup' that so perfectly captures the magic of the Manchester sound from the thickly accented vocals to the sinister pop fused beats.
Boldly marking itself out from the crowd, 'Late Night Shopping' is a debut album that forcefully throws Autokat to the lions as the band bravely includes two lyricless tracks. For any new band this can be seen as a daring move but coming from a band whose craft appears to be that of guitar driven rock, it openly parades for all the sheer confidence and esteem they hold their music in and whilst as first 'Dealy' and 'Under Patriot' look out of their depth, they soon find their footing showcasing Autokat as a band of confidently original musicians.
Boasting the swagger of Kasabian mingled with the alt rock intelligence of Bloc Party, Autokat fearlessly manage to straddle the rock arena and dancefloor simultaneously and with ease. 'Late Night Shopping' is the type of album to restore your faith in the British music scene. Recorded mainly in their rehearsal room, 'Late Night Shopping' is classically lo-fi and wonderfully back to basics, proving that great music doesn't need the backing of a huge record company to succeed.