The shadow of The Whip’s native Manchester hangs heavy over their debut album. Their indie/dance/pop sound is reminiscent of New Order, and this is immediately apparent on the opening track ‘Trash’, with its hard beats, pulsating synths and hypnotic guitar lines.
This formula is repeated throughout the album, although there are some forays into both Aphex Twin-style oddness and straightforward euphoric dance. The throbbing bass lines always stand out, and give the songs a somewhat malevolent and sinister feel. The rasping vocals are an unusual and effective touch, and they are the icing on the cake on ‘Sirens’, an anthemic rocker that gives a nod towards Doves and The Chameleons. This is the kind of song that could give stadium rock a good name.
The Whip strive towards something epic and occasionally reach it, particularly on the haunting album closer ‘Dubsex’. Editors producer Jim Abbiss gives the album his trademark big sound, and the result, whilst not startlingly original, is a highly listenable mix of beats and guitars.