Debut single release from Coventry four-piece, **Honeytrap**, shows two very different sides of a coin. The shining new penny-piece belongs to _'Andy the Freefaller (Part 1)'_ which arrives with the giddy, tipsy euphoria of your long-lost uncle at a summer wedding garden party - not _exactly_ cool, but dancing away to the covers band, bucks fizz in hand, without the slightest regard for his public image. Despite the barn-dance cum **Camper Van Beethoven** aesthetic, it’s not entirely a harmony-laden happy-go-lucky affair, with lyrics tracing the sad tale of terminal worrier, Andy: _"You put your money away for a rainy day while everybody is enjoying the sun / Your face clenched tight every night thinking of all the things you have not done."_
The tarnished side of the coin, _'Death Before the Silver Screen'_, is no inferior relation to its predecessor, but is a shaky, insecure public breakdown, evoking the silhouettes of movie-stars who never quite were; surrendering their 1950s selves to the bottom of the bottle and the corners of seedy Los Angeles bars. Singer Little Dan comes over like a more understated, younger, **Morrissey**, but laced up with the graceful descent of a time-worn Hollywood failure.
As a debut release, it reveals a band who are pulling together some of their most disparate influences (from their website: “Jean-Pierre Jeunet, dog trainers, old jazz and Italian food”) and using them to explore some less-trodden areas of the pop universe. Whether the influence cross-pollination is always going to work is an uncertain matter, but at least someone is trying it, and in this case, pretty much pulling it off.
7Rachel Cawley's Score