Album Review: The Vamps - Wake Up (Virgin-EMI)

3/5

Album Review: The Vamps - Wake Up (Virgin-EMI)

When is a boy band not a boy band? This is not a question you will find yourself pondering listening to the second album from The Vamps.

Though styled as a Busted/McFly-style rock outfit and eager to pose with guitars, under the bonnet they are teen pin-ups of the traditional sort — One Direction minus the global ubiquity but without the jaundiced cynicism.

Instead, radioactive perkiness is the go-to sensibly here, as the tall-haired, man jewelery-bestrewn UK outfit skip and pirouette through a suite of endlessly fizzy pop workouts.

That’s both a weakness and a strength. To anyone over the age of 15, sitting through all 18 tracks will be akin to being force-fed room temperature ice-cream. It goes down easily at first but soon you want the experience to stop. Eventually it’s mild torture.

As disposable froth, however, The Vamps more than hold their own. They can clearly play and a rich adolescent irreverence runs through the project, so that even when apparently singing their hearts out, there is a sense they are constantly on the brink of giggles. With elements of Mumford and Sons-esque folk and the occasional electro beat tossed in, Wake Up more than succeeds as a glorified advertisement for the crate-loads of t-shirts, annuals and posters The Vamps will inevitably shift through Christmas.

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