Clairy Browne and the Bangin’ Rackettes are bringing the Old School music of the 60’s back into present times on their latest LP, “Baby Caught the Bus.” Lead singer Clairy Browne, her band, and her girl group the Bangin’ Rackettes are providing the current generation with the soulful, bluesy sounds of generations past, and are doing it well. Be prepared to be transformed back in time for some of the most interesting music you have heard in a long while….
On “Love Letter,” Browne brings the listener in with her deep, soulful voice
on this fast-tempo track. The music is soulful and funky, and the
Rackettes– made up of Ruby Jones, Camilla McKewen, and Loretta Miller– bring in perfect back-up vocals to complement Browne’s lower range singing. The saxophone and drums, provided by Darcy McNulty and Nick Martyn, blend in with the tambourine and hand-claps– which adds an authentic Old School feel to the song. The band’s enthusiasm shines through in this song, and affects the listener. “Aeroplane” is a slower, more “Rock-ish” song, reminiscent of early Beatles music. It starts off with the piano and drums, and the skill of drummer Martyn and keyboardist Gabriel Strangio is apparent. Peter Bree’s fuzzy guitar method adds to the 1960’s rock vibe to the track. Again, the Rackettes are on-point with their back-up vocals, singing in a doo-wop style. Browne’s vocals are good– she showcases a higher range on this track and reaches all the higher notes. Her voice goes a little off-key at times, but it doesn’t take away from the fun feeling of the song. Title song “Baby Caught the Bus” is a breezy, up-tempo song that is a throwback to the Motown girl group music of the 50’s and 60’s. Browne’s singing is soulful, the Rackettes’ vocals are perfect complements, and the accompanying instrumentation is tight. However, the chorus of the song is completely different from the rest of the composition– the tune changes, the tempo speeds up, and the overall sound is more soulful. This gives the song a slightly disjointed feel, but it works and it gets the listener’s attention. Despite this minor distraction, the song is a good one, and it hits on the retro girl group vibe perfectly.
Clairy Browne and the Bangin’ Rackettes are a throwback band, bringing the music of the 60’s back to modern times. They do this successfully, but need to be careful not to sound too much like an Amy Winehouse tribute band. With the new interest in this bluesy, retro, old school soul style of music, as seen with the success with artists such as Adele, this is the perfect time for this band to release its unique sound to the masses. They create music that people young and old can enjoy, and hopefully will enjoy more success in the future.
Vocals: 3.5 Beats: 4.0 Concept: 4.5