KIRIA- Radio & WHO SHOT WHO - Onwards and Upwards
Bones sees his expectations torched

It’s funny how you can often make incorrect assumptions about CDs just by their cover.

When Rosey recently sent me a couple of album to review, the first sported a blonde babe on the front (Kiria), whilst the other had a skull tattoo (Who Shot Who). Almost instantly I dismissed the former as a Girls Aloud wannabe, whilst the latter was going to be a proper punk band. And was I right? Well not really…..

KIRIA describes herself as the love child of Marilyn Monroe and Ziggy Stardust, and says she produces pop punk music that cites both the Buzzcocks and Sex Pistols amongst her many influences. So out of the window straight away goes my original prejudice that she was another X factor clone.

Her first band had the rather catchy moniker of Suck Baby Suck, before she moved on to an all girl combo Friction. Now having gone solo, she still retains a band for recording and live purposes. I can only imagine she must be reasonably well connected as the video for track Sex on Stage contains actor/comedian Paul Kaye singing backing vocals in the form of his alter ego Mike Strutter.

As for the album RADIO well it’s actually quite a mix of styles and genres from punk to reggae to pop and back again. However predominantly the overall feel is guitar driven, hook laden pop. Stand out tracks are highly infectious single Jelly Baby, lead track Radio and the aforementioned Sex on Stage. However she ably turns her hand to dub reggae on Another Things, a love song on er… Love Song and has more than a touch of Lily Allen on Mirror of You.

All in all a creditable debut effort and well worth a listen, and certainly affirms the old adage of never judging a book (or CD) by its cover.

And so to WHO SHOT WHO and their debut ONWARDS and UPWARDS. According to the blurb they are the mutant musical offspring of Goldblade’s guitarist Pete Byrchmore and ex Acarine vocalist Lusty.

Now I usually attempt to be positive about a CD even if it doesn’t particularly float my boat. So first off the music is great. No nonsense straight ahead punk rock, with thumping bass and drums putting down a solid back beat. However the vocalist just doesn’t do it for me. How can I put this succinctly? He sings out of tune! Tracks like Things That Go Bump in the Night, Hooligan Handbook and I’m Not Happy are at times painful. Now it has to be said that I’m partial to front men who just shout e.g. Cal from Discharge and Daniel Devine from Flats, but I think he genuinely is trying to sing.

Things aren't particularly helped by some of the lyrics which are to say the least simplistic such as “I’m so sorry I’m not happy, I’m so angry, so angry, so angry, so angry” and “Here’s a token line about the Government, because it still needs bringing down doesn’t it” and even “I thought my team was going to win the Cup, we lost three-two, but we were two-nil up”. With due respect I’m not sure Joe Strummer would have put these on a Clash album (Cut the Crap maybe?).

Still, as I can’t sing and don’t have a band who am I to quibble, so good luck to them and maybe there are hordes of Acarine/Goldblade fans out there who will lap this up.