The Valentinos - Damn & Damn Again
Tue 19th Sep, 2006 Music Reviewsin
Forget Paul Banks and Kele O’Kereke, Nik Yiannikas’ voice is the new sex!
Okay, so it’s long been proved that we’re not in any need of saving when it comes to rock or dance, there’s enough material out there to have us swathed in pleasure or pain forevermore. But hell, with bands like Sydney five-piece The Valentinos here to stir the pot with sounds as gritty, lusty and varied as this, it’s hard not to wonder how the hell we spent so long without them!
Their Kim Moyes-helmed debut EP was a frenetic, attitude filled assault on all the senses, so hot was it, that it’s now completely sold out, with no plans to repress. Now after just a few months, they’ve returned with their sophomore effort Damn & Damn Again. An EP that really manages to scratch below the surface of the band’s solid exterior, to reveal a more complex interior than we could have hoped for, with a band of less than two years in age.
Helmed this time by Aria award winning duo –Pnau, The Valentinos really do manage to go above and beyond in showcasing their sound further. From the almost brutally energetic start of ‘Face Is On The Wall’, which picks us up perfectly from the floor where the first EP left us lying. However there’s something a little calmer, slightly more considered about their approach this time round.
‘Rain’ sees the boys pulling at the heartstrings, with a perfected electronic rock sound, which calls to mind Trail of Dead (circa 2001) and catches a small whisper from the ghost of The Cure’s past. It may be a little more laid back and matured than we were imagining, but every bit as blissful as we were hoping and definitely worthy of taking over our airwaves over the coming months.
‘Nightmoves’ is a track that’ll be lighting up the dancefloor all summer long (and yes, you can quote me on that). With an unrelenting spirt of attitude, this track has the same effect on you as Nirvana may have had on you as a teen – you know the one that has you pushing the volume dial to it’s very limits, as you block the rest of the world out and go a little nuts in the grips of it? Yeah, well this is that track!
‘Reflauta Y Reflauta’ is the schizophrenic boy next door you can’t help but love. As they take a darker turn, into spaghetti western stand-off territory, before Nik’s mysteriously charmed vocal sweetly tinkers with the senses, weaving through the intricately layered onslaught. As the sizzlingly vicious becomes more intense, so does the rampant beating of your heart, as you feel the need stub your cigarette out in the eye of everything that pisses you off about society.
From the climax of destruction left by ‘Reflauta..’ (Damn & Damn Again), ‘Nunca Mas’ again cleans up the nervous mess we’re left in and puts the EP to bed ever so sweetly, think M83 sweetness and you’re halfway there.