Leaving aside the fact that the number of bands with fully capitalised names (feeling the need to shout in an ever more crowded marketplace?) is starting to get on my tits JPNSGRLS second album's a welcome blast of hard-hitting yet melodic indie rock.
Whilst Arctic Monkeys comparisons are still easy to make with second song 'A Girl From A Different Dimension' it's hard to imagine that they'd actually be an influence but then again 'Trojan Horse' also, upon a second listen, brings them to mind so maybe things aren't quite as fresh as they first seemed last night.
Either way Divorce benefits from being album number two rather than number four - energy levels are higher and there's still something for the band to prove and brass rings to be reached for & grabbed.
Things become thankfully North American again on the charmingly summer-tinged 'A Comprehensive List Of Things I Love' and the band's strength in depth is amply plumbed on subsequent track 'Circus' as they slow things down just the right side of cornball.
Urgency returns to the proceedings on '2009' before taking a nose-dive on the first maudlin couple of minutes of 'Holding Back'. The second half here's obviously going to be a bit of a trial.
Is 'Gap Year' as much of a double entendre as I think? Overall this is getting a thumbs up as when it's at its lively & cheery best it carries the day and the slower songs aren't really in any way bad, just the relationship between the two styles disrupts the flow of the album. You start out thinking it's one you can put on to keep things lively whilst the barbecue's heating up and it turns into something that newer Kings Of Leon fans might think was new material from their heroes, before going lively/slow/lively/slow until the end. Stupid fun meets adult themes & wins in the end.
Divorce is available from amazon.