The Vamps: Meet the Vamps review – guitar-playing boyband’s hit-and-miss debut

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With their debut album, British teenage foursome the Vamps want to “bring back bandy-sounding music into mainstream stuff”: in other words, they play their own instruments, and by happenstance have come along just as the idea of the guitar-playing boyband is enjoying a renewed popularity – see the chart-topping success of Australia’s 5 Seconds of Summer. To give them their due, segments of Meet the Vamps are verifiably bandy – Wild Heart has traces of folkiness, bumped up by a wistful acoustic guitar figure; Smile’s power-pop swagger nimbly revives 1970s new-wave. A cover of Simon & Garfunkel’s Cecilia, moreover, deftly grasps the mock-calypso slant of the original –though they’ve tarnished it by interweaving their own half-rapped lyric. On the other hand, there are many moments when it would be hard to pick the Vamps out of a lineup alongside One Direction and Peter Andre (whose Mysterious Girl clearly provided much of the inspiration for Girls on TV). This is where their origins as a YouTube covers act are most evident, and the need for a voice of their own most felt.

SOURCE: The Guardian

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