Review: Jack Foley
WHEN Canada's Hot Hot Heat first burst onto the scene in 2002,
with the hip single, Bandages, they were immediately
hailed as one of the trendiest bands of the moment.
Fast forward three years and it seems as though they are having
to re-introduce themselves all over again.
Not that this is a bad thing, of course, given that their ability
to deliver hopelessly cheery three-minute blasts of post-punk
pop songs has not diminished in that time.
If anything, their sound is a little more refined and benefits
tremendously from the production values of Dave Sardy (Dandy Warhols,
Jet, Oasis) - but I doubt you'll find a more energetic and shamelessly
enjoyable post-punk indie rock album all year.
Elevator shows that Hot Hot Heat are very much on the
up, flooring the competition with their deft blend of infectious
melodies and dance-floor friendly anthems.
Steve Bays' distinctive vocal style continues to be as giddy
as ever, while the guitars are as playful and inventive as ever.
Indeed, even though guitarist, Dante DeCaro, recently left the
group, he was around to co-write and record many of the tracks
and is said to be as proud of it as the remainder of the band
(his replacement is Luke Paquin).
Highlights include the forthcoming lead single, Goodnight,
Goodnight, which is among the most infectious on the long-player,
as well as the Cure-like Middle of Nowhere, which finds
the band bringing in a few more sounds while delivering a truly
The chiming guitars and lush hammond organs of Pickin' It
Up are sure to provoke easy comparisons with the likes of
The Clash and, more recently, The Kaiser Chiefs (I Predict A Riot),
while the 'la, la, la' intro of Ladies and Gentleman seem
designed to invite you to sing-along with them.
Strong, too, are the uplifting melodies of You Owe Me An
IOU, which could easily be another single.
Yet it is typical of Hot Hot Heat's happy-go lucky enthusiasm
that all of the tracks on Elevator provide a hopelessly
breezy explosion of joy that can't fail to make an impression
in what is otherwise becoming an overcrowded post-punk market.
The vibe on this one is scorching!
2. Running Out Of Time
3. Goodnight Goodnight
4. Ladies And Gentleman
5. You Owe Me An IOU
6. No Jokes - Fact
7. Jingle Jangle
8. Pickin' It Up
9. Island Of The Honest Man
10. Middle Of Nowhere
11. Dirty Mouth
12. Soldier In A Box
14. Shame On You