There’s been a new CD released. It’s an album called Hi! and it’s the debut album of Swiss band The Animen. Despite the fact that the band is from Geneva, thus in the french part of Switzerland, they sing in English. The band stated that they wrote English lyrics because their genre, garage rock, just can’t be sung in French obviously.
Their music is great, when I first heard the LP’s opener Harder Than Stone I thought that the singer’s voice sounds very similar to the voice of one of the Mandio Diao lead singers. It’s not only the lead vocals which remind to the Swedish, their sound is astonishing related to Mando Diao’s. A good omen.
In summary the variety on Hi! reaches from proper Soul, over typical Garage-Rock to Surf-Rock.
With Not A Single Time and Harder Than Stone soul is provided. To make a developed sound the band used a wind section and distinguished keyboards.
I think The French Letter is even a bit Country-eske. Johnny Cash’s unique ‘train sound’ is somewhere in between the choruses in this lovely song about writing a letter from the front to your love.
There’s one moment in Shake – On The Tabletops when my mind came up with: ‘That sounds like Howler’. And really the musical style of this song could be made by the american garage- and surf-rockers, but Howler’s lead singer hasn’t such an extraordinary voice, unfortunately.
And then there’s a lot of Garage-Rock. The most remarkable songs are Down In Oslo, My Pretty Ballerina and A 16 Smokin Gun. These are really good songs with a catchy tune, nonsense lyrics and all that stuff that will make you enjoy this album. On My Pretty Ballerina even an electric ukulele appears, what do you want more? And acoustic track maybe, here you are. Portrait Of An Artist is an acoustic song which seems to be sad with confusing lyrics. But to be honest I don’t think the lyrics are making much sense all over the album.
Finally, I’d say listen to The Animen. They are a great band with a great distinctive sound.