The Vanity Affair - Love You More
Release Date: January 2009
Record Label: Unsigned
The Vanity Affair literally plays all the right cards to fit into the current power pop trend: Chugging guitars? Check. Jonathan Cook-esque vocals? Check. Synth dance beats and programming? Check. Dance "breakdowns"? Check. Originality? Eh…
There is nothing wholly original about these five songs, but this St. Louis, MO, quartet brings a certain genuine charm to their music that is lacking from other similar bands' sounds. Though it merely rides the waves of a fad, which is disappointing, there are many moments—the breakdown in "Never Let You Go" being one, where the band make excellent use of the programming and guitar interplay—that show a burgeoning potential to create excellent pop songs. As it stands, though, the band is content to mingle with the miscellany of monotonous power pop bands, and, in doing so, making the less inspired bands in that cluster look quite silly.
The Vanity Affair are much better at executing the power pop formula than others to whom they may directly be compared. With consistently catchy songs (more so than their aural ancestors, Forever The Sickest Kids) and, painful lyrics aside (see: "Party Girl"), they have created a listenable and fun EP. Forever The Sickest Kids this may sound like, but with repeated listens it becomes clear that The Vanity Affair has beaten the Warped Tour darlings at their own game. That's not to say this isn't painfully generic; however, these Midwest Myspacers bring a little energy to the tired tricks of the trade that permeate today's music scene, making for a more enjoyable experience than, say, Underdog Alma Mater.
The frequent Forever The Sickest Kids comparisons are sure to turn many fans of pop-punk and power pop away from The Vanity Affair; these fans will want to avoid being bombarded with cheesy, unoriginal, unremarkable pop music that does nothing but pervert the integrity of their favorite bands. The Vanity Affair hasn't eschewed the neon trend entirely, but the youthful wit that makes this sort of band fun is definitely present, and those who are bored by duck-hunting Texans may just find something worth listening to in The Vanity Affair.
I miss the lowercase days. But I think I miss fairwell even more. They made really good pop music without sounding like the trend in pop music today.
I loved Fairwell, Lowercase, and Westcott. TVA is excellent live, and their first EP was so solid. This one is fun to listen to, but I prefer the first one. I know that they use the site, so if they read this, can't wait to see you guys on the 27th.