x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Palma Violets debut is frustratingly tentative

While the album moves along at a cracking pace, more time should have been used to sharpen some of the tracks.

Palma Violets


(Rogue Trade)


After a year of courting the press, Palma Violets must now deliver on their indie-darling tag. Yet the London quartet offer a frustratingly tentative debut that only hints at their talent.

Recorded in two weeks, the album attempts to catch some of the feral energy of the band's live shows. It moves along at a cracking pace, but perhaps the boys could have used the extra time to sharpen some of the tracks.

The opening single Best of Friends deserves acclaim for the way it captures the sound of a party in full flight. But things plod on thereafter. Chicken Dippers doesn't do much other than possess some nice keyboard flourishes, while Johnny Bagga Donuts sounds like a discarded Libertines tune.

However, a few highlights offer a promising future. I Found Love possesses a power-pop crunch, while the organ-led Step Up for the Cool Cats is an equal mix of style and substance.

This is not a bad start. But one feels if the Palma Violets spent as much time on their songs as coming up with zany song titles, 180 would have been a real winner.