The Flairs – Shut Up and Drive (CD)

The Flairs start off with “Poison Love”, and the style of music that they make is a punkish, rockish blend that can be compared to acts like The Donnas, The Eyeliners, and Bif Naked. The tracks are created with catchy choruses, the power chords are many, and the band just feels as if they will make it to the big time in just a few months. The second track on “Shut Up and Drive” is a cover of the Skid Row classic “18 & Life”.

The ties that current punk acts have with Skid Row are many; on the “Punk Goes Metal” album alone, there are two covers of Skid Row tracks (Ataris take on “I Remember You” where Swindle covers “Youth Gone Wild”). How exactly does The Flairs stack up to those acts in covering Sebastian Bach? The cover does not add much in the way of extra material to the original, but The Flairs’ cover sets the tone for tracks like “Sorry 4 Lovin’ You”. While “Poison Love” was a track that was more in a Ramones vein, “Sorry 4 Lovin’ You” slingshots off of the Skid Row style and is much more based in an eighties hair-metal style. This brings The Flairs into a firmly Sum 41 type of groove; this sound is something that comes back at times during “Shut Up and Drive”, but is not a common thread to all of the tracks on the disc. For example, “Stinger” mixes a pop set of vocals with a ska and funk instrumental backdrop just to keep individuals interested. “Ready To Roll” is a track that brings The Flairs back to a place that they were during “Poison Love”.

This means that the band is just trying to come forth correct with only the power chords and the volume cranked up; the vocals put the band into a Josie and the Pussycats (2003 movie version) type of sound more than anything. At some point, wherever that The Flairs go with “Shut Up and Drive”, the band is able to eke out success after success. The catchiness of this album is at such a high degree that this can be the next must-have album to stick in your car for the next six months. While the style of music that The Flairs play may not always be at the cutting edge, they provide a harder-rocking alternative to The Veronicas and Avril.

Top Tracks: Destroyer, Sorry 4 Loving You

Rating: 7.5/10

The Flairs – Shut Up and Drive / 2006 JMP / 13 Tracks / http://www.theflairs.com / http://www.pacificmusic.net / Reviewed 23 July 2006

[JMcQ]

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