June 14, 2007


The Pipettes: Bananarama, the B-52's, and Phil Spector haunt the band's full-length debut, We Are the Pipettes. (Michael Alan Goldberg, 6/13/07, Seattle Weekly)

After recruiting Rosay, Rebecca Stephens (aka Becki Pipette), and three guys who would join Monster Bobby in the all-male backing section dubbed the Cassettes (and later Gwenno Saunders, who replaced Julia Pipette in 2005), the septet began cranking out a string of campy singles indebted to the sounds of those aforementioned groups, as well as the recording techniques of producers Phil Spector and Joe Meek. The songs are dense, reverb-heavy, insanely catchy compositions merging punchy strings and horns with rockabilly/surf guitars, piano plinks, organs, and, of course, all those heavenly, girlish vocal melodies and "oooooh sha la la la" harmonies.

On the Pipettes' 2006 full-length U.K. debut, We Are the Pipettes—slated for U.S. release in August—there are nods to other eras as well. Vocally, there are echoes of Bananarama and even the Spice Girls (their cheerleader chants also fall somewhere between Toni Basil and riot grrrl), and the song "Dirty Minds" crosses Maxine Nightingale's "Right Back Where We Started From" with the B-52's "Roam."

Lyrically, the Pipettes typically steer clear of the submissive approach associated with the original girl groups, frequently opting for bawdy sentiments and righteous kiss-offs: "I don't love you, I don't need you/If you think that this is cruel/Then you should see what my friends do," the trio gleefully sneers in "One Night Stand."

"We're definitely not interested in being some pastiche of the girl groups from the '50s and '60s," Rosay states. "We're just using those ideas as a springboard, and to do something different, you know, as opposed to this sort of standardized rock 'n' roll canon that everyone is born knowing, and this unquestionable reverence you have to have for all of these bands."

To that end, the group has promulgated an attention-grabbing manifesto, boldly stating that the Beatles "ruined everything"...

Here's a live show courtesy of Waves & Wires: The Pipettes 2007-06-12, Popscene @ Rickshaw Stop, SF, CA
or watch a live show on the Fab Channel: -The Pipettes,/a> (Paradiso, 11/20/06)

-MYSPACE: The Pipettes
-MP3S: Pipettes (Hype Machine)
-WIKIPEDIA: THe Pipettes
-LIVE: The Pipettes perform in the Current studio (Mark Wheat, June 8, 2007, Minnesota Public Radio)
-The Pipettes doll up pop in polka dots (Sam Prestianni , J. Poet , and Tony Ware, June 6, 2007 , SF Weekly)

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 14, 2007 12:00 AM
Comments for this post are closed.