Throwback Review: The Vandelles – Strange Girls Don’t Cry

Throw back review in celebration of the release official of The Vandelles’ album Strange Girls Don’t Cry

This review was written for and rejected by Baltimore City Paper in October of 2012. I was able to publish this piece on a music blog that I founded and ran called TPR-Mag…and now I’m able to reshare this review in light of The Vandelles’ official July 9th release of their sexy and iridescently tout album,Strange Girls Don’t Cry.

Jasno is one of those rock and roll survivors that continues to keep himself and The Vandelles as fresh and relevant as humanly possible. So without further ado, here’s my review of Strange Girls Don’t Cry by The Vandelles.

Stream the full album here.

The Vandelles’ Strange Girls Don’t Cry” is a maturely composed love-centric psychobilly album that highlights the truths and follies of love, sex and relationships as Jasno Swarez sees it. The most prevalent distinction between “Strange Girls Don’t Cry” and The Vandelles’ previous releases is that the band truly pushes the envelope in regards to experimenting with traditional pop and ballad-based rock compositional structures.

“Strange Girls Don’t Cry” is a post-modern Frankie and Annette-esque testament of the true challenges of modern day love and the confusion of emotions that tend to complicate the daily musings of reality. Good Boys Don’t Lie is a sexy and simplistic, yet experimental, beach ball pop song that accentuates the foundation of the record’s subject matter and general soundscape.

The album seems to be telling the story of a strange girl who is just out of reach of Swarez’s scope of affection. The music compliments the story with songs like In the City and Never See the Summer. Nonetheless, it should be recognized that Swarez’s voice is clean, powerful, and confident. The confidence and competence of the vocals (which are accompanied by lovely and feminine back-up singers on almost every track) enhance what would be a simplistic and somewhat minimal (particularly in regards to the percussion) experimental beach-pop, psychobilly album.

Swarez repeats the statement “I’m going to make you mine” in different variations a few times throughout this album, and songs likeNocturnal and Miles Away reflect the darker and more painful expressions experienced through love with the use of heavier drone effects and deeper, more dissonant tones.

The six-minute-long first track I’m Way Ahead of You embodies some ofThe Vandelles‘ earlier explorations in heavy experimental rock aesthetics, but this album seems to be more about poise, strategically restrained pop composition, and Jasno’s issues with girls.

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