Soundchecks Music Reviews

Oneida Road by Kamikaze Hearts

One Little Indian / Tangled Up

kamikazehearts.com

ONEIDA ROAD
Kamikaze Hearts

review by J.C. Hartley

Well my Realplayer has just done a damn weird thing, overwriting Chris While and Julie Matthews tracks with Kamikaze Hearts' Oneida Road details, so after wondering where the female vocalist came from and why all the tracks were listed twice and why the damn thing can't just do what I ask, I've minimised everything 'cos I can't bear to watch.

This is 'upstate porch rock', apparently; with a fine array of the stringed and strummed, and occasional bursts of rock to drive a song home. Alternating vocal leads keep things fresh, and for the most part interesting and occasionally quirky production keeps you on your toes. Lyrically perhaps they could be more allusive, Top Of Your Head spoils a nice image by describing everything when we've already got the picture, and I don't like the emphasised rhyme on 'rat' on You Just Can't Get Up And Leave.

Played this at work today while waiting for the server to gather enough steam power to perform the simple function I had asked it to do, and the youth sharing the room with me opined that it was all 'a bit the same', but if you've never strayed far from Greater Manchester in what passes for an imagination, and your musical highlight is the playlist of Key103, I discard you as I did him.

This is quite a gentle 'country folk rock' sound with a melancholic edge to the song-writing; the banjo, mandolin and dobro give it a classic style. Because his friend's sister is asleep in the back seat when they pull up to the drive-in, he orders in a whisper; admit it you're there in Wolfert's Roost. Is that almost a Beach Boys' rhythm and harmony on Ash Wednesday? I like this the more I hear it.


Edited by Tony Lee
for PIGASUS Press