The Cribs consist of twins Ryan and Gary Jarman, along with their younger brother Ross. They formed over a decade and have so far put out 5 fantastic albums. If you haven’t been aware of them before, album number 6 is great jumping on point. Hailing from Wakefield, they play an infectious brand of indie-rock where you can hear the lyrical inspiration from their small town upbringing set to American alternative rock, along with some catchy guitar lines.
Having reconvened over the last year in their home town of Wakefield and Gary Jarman’s adoptive home of Portland, the band later decamped to New York and Magic Shop studio with legendary producer and The Cars frontman Ric Ocasek to begin recording. Ric Ocasek joins a who’s who of indie-rock producers that they have worked with in the past on their previous albums, including Edwin Collins, Alex Kapranos and Dave Fridmann. You can hear Ric Ocasek’s touch throughout the album as well as American bands such as Weezer, who he has produced in the past.
This influence can be heard on opening track Finally Free that features some classic Weezer traits including catchy and slightly distorted guitar riffs along with a call and response chorus complete with some woohoos, which is never a bad sign in my book.
Different Angle is a quintessential Cribs song which to put it simply is a perfect pop song with a great guitar hook and ooh oohs sang by the twin brothers in perfect harmony. This is the clear stand out track on For All My Sisters and one that will easily slot straight into a live set.
On the lead single Burning For No One there is a distant Smiths riff which is reminiscent of some of the songs from their fourth album Ignore the Ignorant, the period in time when iconic guitarist Johnny Marr was a member of the band.
Ivory Hand and Pacific Time are another couple of songs that feature massive Weezer-esque hooks and choruses. I think The Cribs’ time spent on the Weezer Cruise has rubbed off on them, which is no bad thing as they still retain their identity rather than be completely consumed by the influence. For those unaware, the Weezer Cruise was literally that, where Weezer and others bands such as The Cribs played live on a cruise ship which must have been fantastic.
Simple Story is probably the only real let down for me on the album. It is perhaps a little too lo-fi and the pace is considerably slower compared to the rest of the album. Despite this I immediately had a smile on my face during the next track City Storms as their trademark sound instantly came through which again had a simplistic, yet very catchy guitar hook.
Album closer Pink Snow features the albums title in its lyrics and begins quite stripped back. It then builds into a more ramshackle conclusion, which is a great way to end the album and could be quite a good way to end live shows.
One great theme that is prevalent throughout the album is due to the way the songs have been recorded you can clearly imagine how great these songs will sound live at festivals throughout the summer. Summer Of Chances is a great example of this as it almost sounds as it was recorded live as opposed to laying down all the different instrument parts separately. To get a taster of how these songs sound in a live setting, The Cribs will be doing a short series of in-store gigs and album signings in Leeds, Manchester, Warrington, Nottingham, Kingston and Glasgow from the 22nd March (dates below).
If you are already a fan of The Cribs then you take great pleasure in this album and if you weren’t aware of them before then not only do you have these great set of songs to enjoy, but you also have an exciting adventure discovering their back catalogue as well.
For My Sisters is released on 23rd March on Sony Red
By Simon England
Instore Tour Dates:
Sun 22 LEEDS Brudenell Social Club
Mon 23 LEEDS Jumbo Records [Signing Only 12.00noon]
Mon 23 LEEDS Crash Records [Signing Only 1.00pm]
Mon 23 MANCHESTER HMV [Instore + Signing 5.00pm]
Tue 24 WARRINGTON Head Records [Instore + Signing 5.00pm]
Wed 25 NOTTINGHAM Rough Trade Records [Instore + Signing 8.00pm]
Thu 26 KINGSTON Banquet Records [Instore + Signing 5.00pm]
Fri 27 GLASGOW HMV [Instore + Signing 5.00pm]