Bleached have released their debut summer-tinged album 'Ride Your Heart' in the UK at a perfect time. As the sun comes out to visually tease us, despite needing a wooly when you step outside in April, the LA sisters bring a sugary slice of American sunshine to our ears, so you can envisage that you're there; maybe even cruising along in a 'cool' car with your head out the window like an enthusiastic pup and your ombre hair blowing in the breeze. Just look at the artwork for inspiration. 'Ride Your Heart' is a rush of giddy punk spirit, citing obvious influences from Vivian Girls and The Ramones.
Jennifer and Jessie Clavin are doing the family thang, just like fellow LA gals Haim and, of course, The Ramones did. The sisters used to be in Mika Miko and elements of their garage-y sound are channeled through 'Ride Your Heart'. There are some feisty track titles like bouncy opener 'Looking For A Fight' and 'Dead Boy'. But, ultimately, through the angsty front, Bleached sing about love and loss. A lot of the lyrics are about boys, like most female singers/bands so they're not so unusual in that sense, but the dirty guitars and unforgiving bass give the duo an irresistible edge. 'Outta My Mind' offers up a chorus containing, "Get outta my mind boy, you know I think about you all the time" and 'Dead In Your Head' truthfully utters "I never wanted to lose the boy I loved the most".
"Next Stop waiting for the train, next stop smoking in the raaaain, next stop kissing you goodbye, next stop tears in your eyes", is sang effortlessly over the trashy riff, tingling cymbals and backing 'aaahs', making 'Next Stop' a flawless sing-a-long. The sharpness of this record is what favours it the most. Only two songs reach the four-minute marker, which reiterates the hasty punk essence even more. 'Waiting By The Telephone' is an infectious, let-loose song that is wrapped up in under two minutes. 'Love Spells' and 'Searching Through The Past' up the ante with simple yet concrete chords, while less intense songs like 'Guy Like You' and 'Ride Your Heart' still maintain the bewildering buzz conjured by the rest of the record.
So if you're not lucky enough to be heading out to the sunny States this summer to let the wind take away your inhibitions, then don't worry; Bleached have got it covered with this pretty damn good alternative to transport you there anyway.
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