Girl Ray – ‘Girl’ album review

Girl Ray Girl album review 2019 Moshi Moshi records

Photo credit: Laura McCluskey

North Londoners Girl Ray’s second record ‘Girl’ finds the trio embracing their love of pop and old-school R&B. The album was recorded with Ash Workman (Christine and the Queens) at Electric Beach Studios in Margate and its release ties in with a support tour to Metronomy.

The album opens with title track ‘Girl’, a song that sets the scene for what is to come in eminently danceable fashion. Resembling a calmer Vampire Weekend with a bit of Pip Blom thrown in for good measure, this foot-tapper really pumps out of the speaker as the band deliver romantic lyrics: ‘I’ve got a lot of love to give. You’ve got a lot of love to give. We could have fun playing games or you could just hold my hand. The course of true love never did run smooth’. ‘Show Me More’ has a stunning Nile Rodgers-esque bass line, hand claps and melodies tha fall somewhere between Carly Rae Jepsen and The Orielles. ‘Just Down the Hall’ starts in slower fashion and is altogether more sensual, especially in its Marvin Gaye-influenced outro: ‘Come and hold me tight. You know you have the power, you can make my night’.

‘Let It Go’ has a big ballad sound that brings to mind Ariana Grande as the band sing about being alone and lay their feelings bare: ‘How’d you think I feel when you walk away? How’d you think I feel when I lose your games?’ ‘Takes Time’ and ‘Friend Like That’ are defiant and assertive pieces that would slot nicely alongside Self Esteem and TLC with the latter’s synth-heavy beats and perceptive observations: ‘If there’s popcorn at the seat next door, you really think I’d persevere with all the grapes I’ve brought? How could I ever have a friend like that?’ ‘Keep It Tight’ is another defiant and anthemic piece with the opening lines ‘I’ve had a few boys it’s true. He dipped me like a casual fondue. Join the queue’ and ‘Go to the Top’ has a drum machine-based intro and lyrics about ‘drinking wine, feeling fine’, while the closing ‘Like the Stars’ is unashamedly romantic, yet still aware of the potential pitfalls ahead: ‘Poured me wine and kissed my mouth. I’ve been hurt so don’t let me down’.

With ‘Girl’, Girl Ray are embracing their pop sensibilities in a thrilling way that will have you dancing all night long.

Catch Metronomy on the following tour dates:

18th February 2020 – Birmingham, Hare & Hounds

19th February 2020 – Leeds, Belgrave Music Hall

20th February 2020 – Glasgow, Stereo

21st February 2020 – Manchester, YES

22nd February 2020 – Nottingham, Bodega

23rd February 2020 – Cardiff, Clwb Ifor Bach

25th February 2020 – Bristol, The Fleece

26th February 2020 – London, Electric Ballroom

27th February 2020 – Brighton, The Haunt

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