The Vaccines - Come of Age - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

The Vaccines - Come of Age

by Greg Spencer Rating:8 Release Date:2012-09-03

Let's not beat around the bush, the last album from The Vaccines was quite brilliant. It had originality coming out of its ears, catchy riffs and great lyrical elements that all fused together to make one of the best records of last year. So here we are a year-and-a-half later, with the ominous second album. It's such a cliché but often provides a fairly large hurdle for bands that smash their way onto the scene but generally fall short of expectations with their second release.

Come of Age opens with 'No Hope', a great pop song. Although it has a real soft centre, it feels like frontman Justin Young is grafting out a real honesty in his lyrics: "Well, I wish that I was comfortable in my own skin/ but the whole thing feels like an exercise and trying to be someone I would rather not be/ I'd try to second guess if you would be approving/ I find my life ever so moving". Speaking of Justin Young, he has such an intriguing and captivating voice whichb grabs the attention on pretty much every track and rarely disappoints. It's on a track like 'All in Vein' where we hear the delicacies of his vocal and how varied his range can actually be.

It's obvious that The Vaccines are quite content with dishing out three minute indie-pop songs which happen to be really catchy and fun. An example of this is 'Teenage Icon', which sprites along but deals lyrically with Young's incapability to see himself as a frontman instead of a shabby teenager. As the album's title suggests, the majority of the songs are about the insecurities and fears of being an adolescent, summed up on 'Weirdo' where the lyrics depict Young's normality. There's even a hint of Morrissey in Young's vocals alongside a Radiohead-inspired, slow-paced rhythm-section.

'Bad Mood' is so Ramones you forget you're listening to a Vaccines record. It has brooding vocals, simplistic lyrics and a fantastically retro feel which makes you want to listen to Rocket to Russia all over again. This really isn't a bad thing; the album hangs onto its influences and isn't afraid to veer off into any direction the band want, which sets it apart from quite a few indie records out there at the moment.

The only negative points which stand out are that some tracks don't really cut it compared to the high quality of the majority on the album. Also, the band do lack a little originality on some songs and the middle section of the record feels a little uneven. However, these feel like minor quibbles since much as the album really stands up and is one that needs to be heard.

Come of Age is a solid second offering from a band who will go from strength to strength; it may not be a complete masterpiece but it's pretty difficult to find any major faults with it. Who'd want to anyway with The Vaccines being such a bright spark in the British music scene?

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