Thursday, November 18, 2010

Perfect Pervert

Photo by rezflicks on Flickr.

The Girls At Dawn are sadly no more, but before leaving us they gave us a fantastic full-length, released by garage authorities Norton. An album was a natural step after a 7" on HoZac, a 12" on Captured Tracks and another 7" on Tic Tac Totally (which doesn't seem to have come out yet). Up until now, The Girls At Dawn have seemed perfectly suited for the 7"/12" format and one of the reasons I've been so keen to hear the LP is to see if they could pull it off. And I don't think there's any doubt that they have.

Although the title (Call the Doctor) and the cover photo might give you associations to riot grrrl groups, these 12 pop songs are much more rooted in 60s garage and the few female performers within that scene. I suppose lots of groups can bash out 12 songs in 20-25 minutes, but what is most impressive about this set are the melodies - especially the vocal and harmony on "I'm Alone", and "They're Waiting" (The Sonics reference?).

The recordings sound as thin as a bad 7" rip on Back From the Grave (this is good, of course), with a touch of chorus on the guitars to supply that gothic touch which I guess is part of the idea of the band. "Reach Me (Don't Forget Me)" sounds like the most elaborately arranged one, and works splendidly with its 12-string overdubs during the breaks.

Norton also have TGAD featured on their Rolling Stones covers singles club. "That Girl Belongs to Yesterday" (never actually recorded by the Stones) is backed with The Gaye Blades' take on "Ruby Tuesday". The question is, what happened to "Fox In the Woods" which was my first favourite by the band? Whoah, my question was just answered as I downloaded the new (and free!) Tic Tac Totally comp. There is was!

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