The LaFontaines – Class

the-lafontaines-class-album-coverHaving built up a reputation as an exceptional, exciting and – from personal experience – stupendously loud live act, Motherwell’s The LaFontaines have broken the Scottish Top Ten with their debut album, Class. It’s a pleasure to say that the band have managed to capture the passion, fun and verve of their live shows and gotten in down on record.

Kicking off with brooding dirty bass, ‘Slow Elvis’ sets out their stall straight off. Acerbic and sharp observations carry on through the album married to radio-friendly rap/rock beats and riffs on songs like recent single ‘King’ and ‘Under the Storm’. The latter also highlights more than any other, the contrast in vocal styles between frontman Kerr Okan and bass player John Gerard. It’s this contrast that helps elevate The LaFontaines from their competition, giving them a slightly more unique sound.

Elsewhere, on songs like ‘Paperchase’ and ‘Class’, the band seem to be going for a stadium sound with big choruses guaranteed to get festival crowds singing along. They’ve definitely got a strong notion of how to give a three-minute pop song an epic feel. Dropping the tempo for album closer, ‘Pull Me Back’ shows that the band have plenty of tricks up their sleeve.

With a handful of dates over the next week or so and a T in the Park appearance lined up, I’m keeping my fingers crossed that a more extensive tour will be announced for later this year. Having now heard the album, I can’t wait to see the songs live.

Graeme Campbell

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