Vanity: Don't Be Shy 12" (new)

Katorga Works Records


Putting aside some of the driving Oi sound from the Vain In Life LP in favor of a more Britpop influence, all while developing the hints of glam from their subsequent 7" single, the songs of Evan Radigan and Colman Durkee are now less late 70s/early 80s Poulton-le-Fylde and more early 90s Manchester, propelling the band into bold and exciting new territory. In this day of flaccid plumage, Vanity stands tall above every and all street rock & roll disgrace.

Our take: So, Vanity's new record is a departure from their previous stuff, which stuck pretty close to the pub rock / skinhead sound of a certain band-who-shall-not-be-named. The joke I've seen floating around is people calling them "oi!-asis" due to the pronounced Britpop influence on Don't Be Shy. For the record, this doesn't really sound anything like Oasis, but I do think that it bears a passing resemblance to some punkier Britpop bands like Supergrass. I know that Adam from Katorga Works had some anxiety about how this record would be received, which it turns out was justified... some people really, really hate this record, though I'm not sure that it's the same people who liked their earlier stuff. As for me, this is by far my most listened-to of the 3 hotly anticipated new Katorga Works releases (the other being new LPs from Crown Court and Pure Disgust). At first I couldn't tell if I liked this so much just because it so far exceeded my expectations (Vanity's early stuff left me quite cold) or because it's actually a good record, but after spending a couple of weeks with this I think it really is an outstanding record. While not all of the songs are straight up great, there isn't really a clunker, and the highs (like the acoustic "Stay of Execution," which is a brilliant pop song) are very, very high. It's a high-energy, rocking pop record with big, big hooks and hardcore energy, and as such it's right up my alley. Haters be damned... this has already gotten far more spins than 95% of what comes across my desk, and I'm not showing any signs of getting sick of it yet. Recommended.
Tags: 10s britpop glam melodic oi! recommended