MP3: Violet Nine - Any Wonder
Hailing from my favourite America city, Bostonites Violet Nine have just released their debut album, Any Wonder, on PKG. They formed in 2002 and have spent the last few years honing their sound and playing shows around the Boston area, and if properly marketed I think they could do quite well. They've got a slightly late-Britpopish sound, inflected with bits of Killers style new wave guitar, and overall their debut is a pretty decent record. Vocalist Ben Consoli really impresses, and overall the band back him up really well, although the rhythm section could sometimes be said to be a little too unimaginative. Their sound is definitely very slick, and that would be explained by the fact that it's produced by Greg Archilla, whose previous credits include albums for Matchbox 20 and Collective Soul. Luckily, despite feeling very radio friendly, Violet Nine seem to have enough good licks for the initial high quality sheen not to put me off too much. They certainly sound like they'd be a pretty good live band, and I can only say that if an Albini or a similarly minimalist producer had been allowed to have a go at recording them, it would probably be a belter. As it is, it's just a great summer record, and worth checking out for anyone who's not afraid of a bit of pop mixed with their rock. Enjoy.