Album Review: Street Chant Means

By Jacqueline Smith

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Street Chant. Photo / Supplied
Street Chant. Photo / Supplied

Rating: 4/5
Verdict: No wonder Jack White was impressed

Local band Street Chant have come a long way since changing their name from Mean Street and taking on a new drummer. They have toured with the Dead Weather. And they have had the patience to sit down and bundle their crazy live set on to a record.

It still sounds like it wants to burst out of the case and play live - and it's something first-time listeners will want to see live too.

There is a likeable obnoxiousness behind guitarist and lead vocalist Emily Littler's retro angst. There is sweat behind Alex Brown's wild drum beats and there is furious passion behind the thick bass of the (sometimes) lipsticked bassist Billie Rogers.

Over the years, the heavy guitar trio have learned not only to mimic bands like the Buzzcocks and Sonic Youth but to twist their sound to reflect modern Auckland. This disobedient debut album sounds like a cache of bohemia in the heart of the central business district.

It features their catchy, 80s pop shout-along singles Scream, the wonderfully dark Yr Philosophy, the catchiest Less Chat, More Sewing and also the gritty, marauding Yaba Ara as well as new, varied tracks that show they can nail more than a pop song.

Witty, garage-sounding Stoned Again could be the theme song of bored youth living at the bottom of the world - it should be mandatory listening for authorities making judgments about the youth of today.

- NZ Herald

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