Blue Skies For Black Hearts: Serenades And Hand Grenades

Blue Skies for Black Hearts
Serenades and Hand Grenades
King Of Hearts
2008-05-20

Crisp pop songs should never go the way of the dodo bird, so thankfully there are bands like Blues Skies For Black Hearts to continue the tradition of forefathers like The Beatles, The Kinks and Dave Clark Five. Led by vocalist Pat Kearns, the band makes the most of “Siouxsie Please Come Home” with its retro-rock vibe and “A World Without Love” which sounds like a more mature version of The Click Five. The band also pulls out all the stops with the horn-driven, bouncy “Jenny & Steve” which strolls along without a care in the world. It’s like the group are caught in an infectious pop time warp and refuse to come out from the vault, particularly on the jangle-laced “She’ll Follow Me”. However Blue Skies For Black Hearts sag during “Little White Lies”, a nice pop song but one that sounds like their mailing it in a tad. That’s not the case with “Ambition” which is an ambitious, Sloan-leaning foot-stomper that is probably the album’s highlight. A close second is the choppy “I Still Wish That You Were Still Around” that sounds like a very polished Guided By Voices song Robert Pollard spent days perfecting. And if one thought the first 11 songs were flukes, the band shines on the pretty, orchestral “Someday There Will Be Better Days”.

RATING 7 / 10
PopMatters