(taken from http://www.hivemag.com, deserves a lot more publicity, go check the site out!)
It’s a good question that is, what do we expect from The Vaccines? If their current day job of most hyped band in Britain is anything to go by, we expect a hell of a lot from them. So it’s a good job this album is a solid example of a brilliant guitar debut. It’s even up there with Whatever People Say I Am That’s What I’m Not as an album for a generation. There’s something for everyone on this album, even my own mother has been and bought this album this week.
Whilst the songs are short here, they pack a punch. Opening with Wreckin’ Bar (Ra Ra Ra) this 90 second burst of guitar and feedback mixed with shout along lyrics is the biggest hook any album could have. Previous single Post Break Up Sex slots nicely towards the end of the album, keeping the listeners interest as the album begins to wane slightly.
In between the two singles If You Wanna and the aforementioned Post Break Up Sex, we find the gentlerWetsuit, a slow croon from the band, before we’re launched full throttle back into their trademark brand of guitar pop with Norgaard and A Lack Of Understanding, the latter clocking in at just over 3 minutes, the golden time for the perfect pop song.
Blow It Up is another slow respite from the Strokes-esque guitar on this album, but the break is only brief. The album rattles along like a hurricane through teenage life, musing everything from break ups to make ups and everything in between. Wolf Pack is another aggressive pop song, gone nearly as soon as it’s started, and the same can be said for a lot of the songs, which is a shame really.
A lot of the tracks on What Did You Expect … are barely 3 minutes in length, on counting there are 2 on the standard copy of the album. Most people would bemoan this as a bad thing, but in a time where everything is on shuffle and albums are rarely listened to all the way through it’s definitely to The Vaccines advantage that they keep it short and sweet.
It was obvious from the singles that the band are nothing new and innovative, but are we not a bit fed up of made-up genres and competitions for the worst band name ever? Here is a fantastic album of songs about sex and love, and at the end of the day, The Vaccines have captured the essence of youth and set it to a soundtrack of guitar power pop. And when it comes to festival season there’ll be a whole new set of expectations on their shoulders.