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Yellow Stripe Nine – Trouble With Girls

Wow, this eighties fetish that’s currently plucking at the fishnets of our pop kids is spiralling way out of control. I suppose this happens to everyone eventually, the sights and sounds of your youth getting plundered and recast as the hip here and now. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, just disconcerting.

So Yellow Stripe Nine speak to us of diabolical, dandyish decadence whilst posing immaculately on a leather chesterfield. There is a white suit, there are brogues, there are cravats! There is style, but is there substance? Does it matter in a world governed by “cash and glamour”*? A world the band’s info tells us they inhabit.

Musically, YSN tread a path not dissimilar to that of My Life Story (without the cast of thousands) or, more recently, luxembourg; a path of swooning foppery and delirious poppery that leads us to two sparkly portions of creepily smooth synthy stuff.

‘Trouble With Girls’ mixes ABC with Heaven 17 (specifically ‘Crushed By the Wheels Of Industry’); precise, measured, glassy pop. The marvellously monikered Mr Pete Wurlitzer sings in a punctilious, gulpy croon that sits somewhere between Phil Oakey and (yikes!) Tony Hadley. Ripening bass sounds bulge beneath fastidiously swooping keyboards and you start to feel a bit unclean as the measured pop spreads like a sticky stain across your brain. ‘Cristal’ is choppy, bombastic and argh! the last few seconds make my skin crawl. It’s the way Pete hisses, ‘Fssss (intake of breath through teeth sound) Crissstalll!’ Quick, back to track one, YSN’s smarmy army is here to do despicable things to your ears. Come on you know you want to.

*See, cash & glamour = the eighties, where sex and money were the new gods.

R.R.R.G: Intractable, intoxicated petulance

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