We give you Swagger....

I know, I know, it's all we've been talking about. But it's finally HERE! Take just a minute to go out and have a listen. Here is what some folks are saying about it:

Cicero Buck 
Album: The Birth Of Swagger
Label: SuperTiny
Tracks: 8
Website: http://www.cicerobuck.com


A long 11 years on from their sophomore release, Humbucky (albeit punctuated by a 2011 EP), this is the long awaited third full-length album by the Bedford based Anglo-American husband and wife duo of Lousiana-born Kris Wilkinson and Brit Joe Hughes. It's a bold, confident title, one that certainly fits the nine tracks which call on such influences as Cheap Trick, Phil Spector and ELO in its cocktail of blues, folk, and pop.

Handclappy, guitar led pop rock and not a little reminiscent of The Bangles, the title of opening track also serves as a comment on the album as capturing Lightning In A Bottle.

Things get bluesier on the sultry seductive swing of the twang guitar I Made It Up before the 60s steeped Don't Get Mad At Me shifts the goalposts again for what, were it not for the click beats and electronic effects, you could easily imagine being sung by Dusty Springfield.

The fusion of intricate, electro-based sounds and arrangements with the songs' organic elements often imbues the album with a both retro and contemporary feel, something firmly evidenced on scuffed mid-tempo ballad The Hole and the sassy blues upright bass and organ driven Easy Company with its throaty guitar distortions and sax stabs. On the other hand, you also get things like the unvarnished skipalong oh yeah pop of My Baby's Back, the snarly, muscular rocked up riffing Rough and Ready and There Is You, which, the initial synth pulse aside, is pure Jeff Lynne enswathed three minute 70s pop.

The duo's lengthy hiatus was primarily down to becoming parents, so it's only fitting that daughter Ruby repays the favour by singing with mom (and presumably providing the inspiration) on the catchy closing Nitelite, which builds from simple acoustic strum to a wall of sound and 60s twanged guitar.

Having got back in the saddle, word is they're also readying a more rootsy, Americana-based follow-up for spring of this year, but for now this struts their stuff nicely.

Mike Davies

Kristine HughesComment