Sassy chaotic rock with an undercurrent of complex thoughts and ideas to uncover.
No one does sassy and chaotic rock quite like Illuminati Hotties. Back with her third album “Let Me Do One More” we have punky anthems, comedic satirical send-ups of people you love to hate and heartfelt grungy rock bangers. There’s a lot here that has the potential to lack staying power but just as before, Illuminati Hotties knows exactly where to curb the gimmicks.
Talking of gimmicks – catchy chorus noises! The entire chorus of “MMMOOOAAAAAYAYA” is that sound and it totally works. There is a raspy angst that bares a chaotic smile with these tracks that make them feel glorious. Full of energy, totally unapologetic and in your face, these are songs to play loud. “Pool Hopping” is furiously catchy with summer rock vibes and bubblegum backing vocals. “Joni: LAs No.1 Health Goth” is visceral in its power surge of explosive break downs and then “Beach Boys does grunge” for the verse and chorus. We all know a Joni. We all roll our eyes collectively and it’s great.
Outside of these songs though, dig deeper and there’s tons of adult rock and self-conflict going on. The lethargy and disconnect of the chords and vocals in “Kickflip” when she sings “when every day is the same” is inspired as the daily grind transfers to a musical context. Then there is the sad confusion of “Threatening Each other re: capitalism”. The quiet dirge reflects Illuminati Hotties hammering home how she feeds into the problem and is so aware of it, buying bottled water. The idea is transferable and the brief exploration of being a good herself is clearly playing on her mind. “Knead” is a classic rock anthem in waiting whilst “u.v.v.p.” is like her Bic Runga via 60s rock tribute. “Protector” is a tender ballad that always takes me by surprise when I hear it. When you’ve songs like “Cheap Shoes” that speaks of class and money does to bright and bold power chords and jangly riffs, you don’t expect the emotions to hit in such a strong and fragile way. “Protector” stays so ethereal and soft from beginning to end and is utterly captivating. If anyone thinks Illuminati Hotties is a one-trick pony – this single-handedly proves them wrong.
I love this album and I’m delighted that it sounds different from her chaotic 2nd album which was one of my favourites of 2020. This is an expanded palette of rock that cements Illuminati Hotties as a cult indie sensation. I can’t wait to see what she tackles next.
Recommended track: Knead
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