This is one of those tracks. One which you listen to, you laugh, you enjoy the lyrics and you think “yeah, I liked that”. Then you put it on a second time, fully expecting to not quite enjoy it just as much. But you do, and in fact, you maybe get a wee bit more out of it – catch the lyrics you missed the first time round, enjoy the beat a bit more. This track is infectious.
While there is no getting round the fact that the central conceit is gimmicky – the lyrics repeat the mantra “I Miss The Nineties” over and over as lead singer Andrew Wagstaff lists several items which captured the cultural zeitgeist (including, but not limited to: The X-Files, Tamagotchi, Windows 95 and Eric Cantona) – the song itself is catchy pop goodness of the highest calibre and so the gimmick works outstandingly well.
It’s a fast song, a veritable rollercoaster through the past, and it’s impossible to dislike. It’s a track you can see getting plenty of airplay over the next few months.
Any worry that “…Nineties” is just a catchy song by a forgettable band is instantly dispelled by the opening salvo of “This Is The Fourth Time (I Have Been In Your House)” – its partner on this double A-side.
Dirty guitars – all power chords and cutting solos – and relentless bass introduce a song with a much more serious slant. A look at disastrous dating, “..Fourth Time” proves that shorn of gimmicks this band can still put together (here’s that word again) infectious rock.
The great victory here for The Winter Olympics is that they prove they can do menacing rock without eschewing the epic choruses – much like a number of the nineties acts they idolise.
It’s hard to judge from just two tracks, but if the change of pace between them is any indication, this may well be a band dripping with versatility.
I can’t wait for the album.
(Released through Office Rock Records on 14th March 2011)
Kenneth John Porteous