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Love Tattoo is a stunning debut. Although it’s meticulously recorded (you can actually hear the pop of the double bass for once) Imelda’s coquettish croon is the star of the show.
Edwin McFee, 06 Nov 2008
For some reason, every so often the mainstream music world seems to reacquaint itself with the rockabilly scene. Bands like the Stray Cats enjoyed huge success in the 80s, while in the 90s psychobilly acts such as Tiger Army gained acclaim, and now it appears that it’s Dublin’s own Imelda May’s turn to dust down the genre and become the latest in line for stardom. As a fully paid-up devotee of the rockabilly scene, this writer often views newcomers with suspicion, as unfortunately for some it’s about fashion rather than passion, but after living with Imelda’s debut for a few weeks I’m pleased to report that (in the words of Johnny Rotten) “she means it, maaaan.”
Love Tattoo is a stunning debut. Although it’s meticulously recorded (you can actually hear the pop of the double bass for once) Imelda’s coquettish croon is the star of the show. ‘Johnny Go A Boom Boom,’ ‘Big Bad Handsome Man’ and ‘Smotherin’ Me’ are classic rock ‘n’ roll tunes in the making, and all of the twelve tracks on offer are utterly timeless. To her credit, Imelda also realises that in order to make a really memorable rockabilly record, you need a bit of light and shade, and Love Tattoo has that in spades with jazzy renditions of ‘Meet You At The Moon’ and ‘It’s Your Voodoo Working’ nestled alongside rockier tunes like the title track.
After years in the wilderness, it looks like the age of quiffs and riffs is back: thanks to Imelda, it will be in safe hands.