mon 18/06/2018

CD: The Vamps - Wake Up | reviews, news & interviews

CD: The Vamps - Wake Up

CD: The Vamps - Wake Up

A drippy, if anthemic, second date with the latest teen dreams

Or you could buy a puppy

If you’re between 12 and 15, The Vamps are big news. Ten million singles sales and 225 million YouTube views. That sort of big. They are, allegedly, not a boy band as they weren’t put together by one of Cowell’s televisual juggernauts. They also “play real instruments”, although I challenge anyone to come up with such software-amped earbud-candy in their garage. In any case, musical criticism is somewhat irrelevant, since the real purpose of this album is to act as a danger-free practice boyfriend for girls just starting to think about the real thing.

The lyrics say it all: “Seven AM and you’re making me late for work / I gotta call in sick, I’ve got a bad case of the hottest girlfriend in the world” (from “Stay Here”); “I find it so cute when you think there’s ever been anyone but you” (from “Coming Home”); “I used to try and get into your space but then I learned my lesson / Because you’re the type who’s in love with the chase” (from “Rest Your Love”); “We’re alone and broke but that's OK / There’s a fire in my heart” (from “Runaway”). And so on and on and on, ad infinitum. The only premise for listening to The Vamps' second album is if your hormones have just started to kick in and you fancy you might want to “get with” one of them. There's nothing wrong with that. But anyone else playing Wake Up is a desperate lame-oh.

Most of the 20 songs start with a hint of guitar, but any semblance of a rock sound is soon drowned in brain-jarring, super-compressed daytime radio crassness (the horrific production on Ellie Goulding’s hugely successful “Burn” is as good a reference point as any). It does have its moments. “Volcano” is ebullient, catchy and even features MC'ing, “Coming Home” and, to a lesser extent “Million Words” let the guitars keep the electronic hysteria at bay, and the two pop reggae numbers, “Peace of Mind” and “Stay Here”, are cheerful froth. The former even boasts near-rock’n’roll lyrics – “I’ve been living in hotel bars” – before pulling back to the usual soppiness, while the latter showcases The Vamps’ only hint of mischief – “I’m gonna stay right here and smoke the day away” – naughty, naughty! Only they’re not. They’re as safe as regulation-compliant moulded plastic.

  • For the first four weeks after its release The Vamps'  Wake Up comes with a DVD of a concert film from their sold out O2 Arena shows in May

Overleaf: Watch the video for the single "Wake Up", which features Brooklyn Beckham


The real purpose of this album is to act as a danger-free practice boyfriend for girls just starting to think about the real thing


Editor Rating: 
Average: 2 (1 vote)

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