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The Whigs - Enjoy The Company (Review)

The Whigs, Enjoy The Company

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

THE Whigs have described their latest album, Enjoy The Company, as a raucous ode to rock and roll. Damn right!

From the opening track Staying Alive to the anthemic closer Ours, this celebrates everything that’s good about rock music. Containing a lot of trace elements of the bands that inspired them (from Dinosaur Jr to Foo Fighters through to the classics such as The Who), this frequently tips its hat to the past while also looking resolutely to the future.

The opening song, in particular, feels like a statement of intent. Staying Alive unfolds in highly melodic fashion, brimming with classic rock qualities, yet all of a sudden becomes an eight minute epic complete with crunching guitar solos and the type of giddy excess that used to be the hallmark of bands like The Who and Zeppelin. It works in both grabbing your attention and showcasing the sound of a band clearly out to have some fun.

It’s followed by a personal favourite… Gospel, featuring great guitar work, a superb chorus and some great lyrics (“take a ride on a wave that is in your brain”). It also combines the best elements of acts like Death Cab For Cutie, Foo Fighters and Nada Surf.

Tiny Treasures, meanwhile, is another feel-good romp that talks of being in love for the first time and enjoying life, while dropping in an occasional country twang in the guitars. It’s celebratory and infectious.

Summer Heat is an unapologetic driving anthem that has a Petty vibe, After Dark thrives off its cheeky stop-start guitar riff and understated delivery and Waiting is steeped in classic guitar riff-making and a nicely husky vocal.

Even better, Couple of Kids drops an effortlessly toe-tapping vibe, some great hooks and another look at love… albeit from a slightly more bittersweet point of view (“we’ve been together for so long, it’s only natural for you to think that we’re done”). It’s got intelligence to match its realism and, yes, romanticism.

Thank You, meanwhile, comes over all acoustic and beautiful for a campfire moment (“thanks for being the love of my life and leading me into the light”), complete with enchanting glockenspiel beats.

And like its name suggests Rock And Roll Forever has a raw, ragged, livewire feel that is a brash combination of all things great and rock… from Petty and Mellencamp to Jagger and Richards.

Ours rounds off proceedings with a slow-building charmer that also underlines the warmth that has been inherent in The Whigs songwriting throughout. These are great songs to listen to and enjoy, yet they have plenty to say too.

Without doubt, Enjoy The Company is an aptly named LP… you’ll positively love being in this band’s company.

Download picks: Gospel, Summer Heat, Couple of Kids, Thank You, Rock And Roll Forever, Tiny Treasures

Track listing:

  1. Staying Alive
  2. Gospel
  3. Tiny Treasures
  4. Summer Heat
  5. After Dark
  6. Waiting
  7. Couple of Kids
  8. Thank You
  9. Rock And Roll Forever
  10. Ours