On Second Thought: The Draytones – Up In My Head (2008)

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The Draytons emerged as an exciting new British three-piece band with their Byrds/Beatles/Kula Shaker hybrid on this, their debut album. I also detect a little bit of the La’s more shuffley sound thrown in for good measure.

Prior to this, the Draytones released a rocking six-song EP called Forever On in 2007, which contained perhaps their best song in “Keep Loving Me” — a showcase for their Kula Shaker-like sound. That track’s driving, fuzzy, rockin’ slice of energy deserves to be a hit single somewhere!

Up In My Head opens with “Turn It Down,” rocking out with guitarist/lead vocalist Gab Boccazzi’s Lennon-like vocals out front. “After All” adds some nice harmonica fills to the mix. Drummer/vocalist Luke Richardson not only pounds the hell out of his drums throughout the record — giving the group its spark — but also takes the lead vocal on the rockin’ slide guitar strut of “Heart Shaped Line,” to add another flavor to their stew. “As High As I Can” is the most Byrds-sounding track here, and it’s great to hear that 12-string Rickenbacker ringing out in full regalia. Bassist Chris Le Good adds just the right melodic bass with backing vocals to keep things driving on ahead.

“On the Way” continues that English band tradition of throwing in a little bit of dancehall, while also adding an extra ingrediant of jazzy lounge to the breezy mix. A little variety does not hurt here, gentle readers. “Don’t Talk to Me,” meanwhile, boasts a slight punkish drive, which helps fuel this tune. The chiming, psychedelic “Throwing Stones” exhibits a definite Revolver influence, while the folk ballad “Flowers on the Bridge” is perhaps the most different track on the whole album.

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Steve Elliott

Steve Elliott

Steve Elliott has written for Shindig, Twist and Shake, Garage & Beat and Ugly Things. A big fan of all things rock and roll - especially the British Invasion, garage rock, psychedelic, new wave, folk rock, surf and power pop - he was a consultant on Sundazed Music's reissue of 'The Best of Butch Engle & The Styx: No Matter What You Say' in 2000, and has also provided liner notes for Italy's Misty Lane Records. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Steve Elliott
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