The Morning After Girls - Shadows Evolve

Clark Summers 26/06/2006

Rating: 5/5

The campaign to "keep music evil" (spearheaded by the delicious Brian Jonestown Massacre) gathers pace here as The Morning After Girls finally unleash their debut album to a British public seemingly starved of decent honest to goodness rock 'n' roll. Seriously, what is wrong with the music buying public of this fair nation? This album absolutely slaughters the competition and then some.

A heady mixture of narcotic drone rock, sixties influenced psychedelic wig outs and J.A.M.C. inspired feedback rock - "Shadows Evolve" possesses everything you could want in an album and then some. Amongst a raft of fine songs we get "Run For Our Lives" - essentially an update of the Stones voodoo blues for the nu-gazing generation, the driving garage rock of "Straight Thru You" (the band's debut single) and the hazy, spaced out trip of "Always Mine". "Shadows Evolve" isn't confined to pure retro-rock worship however, "Hi-Skies" is a garage-y take on Nirvana at their swaggering peak while the collected works of early Pink Floyd, Spiritualized, The Verve and Ride all loom large over proceedings, witness the sprightly title track that comes on like the latter band working themselves up into a state of pure unadulterated, FX addled bliss.

There are occasional moments of over indulgence as with most psych-rock albums - vis a vis the effects heavy diversion of "Fireworks" and the baffling drone rock instrumental "Fall Before Walking" - but these are mere ink blots on a near perfect copy book. In amongst all the guitar squall that makes up around three quarters of the album the more contemplative, tranquil numbers stand out, none more so than the dreamy "Interlude", a track that wouldn't have sounded out of place on the Verve's 1993 shoegaze masterpiece "A Storm In Heaven". The acoustic guitars are also dusted down for the somnambulant "Lazy Greys", arguably one of the best tracks on this impressive compilation of the band's two Australia only Prelude E.P.'s. "Shadows Evolve" stands up as an impressive opening salvo from a band clearly (one would hope) destined for greater things in 2006. The question now is - can T.M.A.G take things to the next level?