Veronica Falls have been tarred with the wrong brush. After the release of their eponymous debut towards the end of 2011, various people squashed the band into a miserablist, gothic indie band with a penchant for pop music. Not that the album wasn’t well received, it was, it’s just the merciless pigeonholing that seemed unnecessary. Well, if Veronica Falls wanted to create something to dispel the notions that they are anything other than a guitar driven indie pop band, their sophomore album Waiting For Something To Happen is it.
The album begins in some familiar territory with ‘Tell Me’. The steady build of James Hoare and Roxanne Clifford’s familiar, charmingly off-kilter, harmonies and Hoare’s Johnny Marr-esque guitar, let you know that you are unmistakably listening to a Veronica Falls album. ‘Teenage’ is the possibly most surprising track of the entire album. There’s no other way of putting this, but it is a near-perfectly formed pop gem. Clocking in around the 3:30 mark, there’s no stopping the relentless catchiness of the guitar line and melody. It’s the musical equivalent of a big pink bubblegum burst inside your head that will stick to you brain for days. Tracks like ‘Shooting Star’ and ‘If You Still Want Me’ still carry that sinister essence that give Veronica Falls their chique bleakness. The title track, nested halfway through the album, is definitely a stand out. Clifford’s vocals are more confident here, as they are on the album as a whole. It’s as though she has gone from love lorn teen to quirky chanteuse in between albums.
It’s good to see a few well versed live favourites like ‘Burried Alive’ and ‘Last Conversation’ on the album, too. The later brings Waiting For Something To Happen to a close, and with that comes the feeling that you’ve just heard a band that has a real sense of where they want to be, and aren’t afraid of creating songs that are more pop influenced and accessible to get there. That’s not to say there are tracks on the album that don’t have that quintessential gothic doo-wop that Veronica Falls are known for, but there is an unexpected optimism that runs through the entire album. Waiting For Something To Happen is the band’s shot at propelling themselves into the slipstream of the mainstream. It seems Veronica Falls have side stepped that ‘difficult’ second album by going into the studio and creating something, not entirely, but definitely, different.
Waiting For Something To Happen is released on 04 February on the ever dependable Bella Union (UK) and Slumberland (US). The band are on tour in support of the album. Check out where to see them HERE.