Strangely Alright tends to embrace some of the rich and crazy sounds of the 60s, everything from pop to rock to psychedelia, a band pitching music influenced by the Summer of Love era to listeners poised on the edge of The Winter of Discontent. Perhaps. Perhaps not.
But some of the music that acts as their influences and some of their excellent reference points occasionally fall into that timeless category. Their infusion of those sounds, and their embrace of the now-classic acts that made them, means that the band sound just as much of the here-and-now as anything shimmying its way up the charts today. And that is certainly the case here.
Not The End reminds me of The Stones – simple structure, killer riffs, an understated pace that sounds twice as fast as it actually is, choruses that you will be singing along to from the start – and that can only be a good thing. And the reason that this doesn’t sound as infused with the usual 60’s flavours, is because bands such as the Stones, and those who came afterwards, collectively kept that incendiary sound alive.
Strangely Alright know the difference between roack and rock ‘n’ roll. The former is loud for the sake of it, lumpen, bombastic and to full of its own importance. Rock ‘n’ roll grooves. It swings. It swaggers. It has attitude but is more fixated on having fun. It invites you to dance rather than to stand around looking menacing or important or knowledgable. It is music for girls AND boys. The Stones had it, The Stooges had it, The Clash had it, The Black Crowes had it. And Strangely Alright have it. And then some!