The Van T’s are guaranteed to make waves with the grungy surf-rock sound of debut EP Laguna Babe.
Twin sisters Hannah and Chloe Van Thompson (both vocals and guitar), along with bassist Joanne Forbes and drummer Shaun Hood, are fresh from wowing festival audiences at T In The Park and Electric Fields with their mix of 50’s jukebox sound and 90’s garage rock style.
The comparisons with fellow Scottish band Honeyblood, who they recently supported at The Art School in Glasgow, will undoubtedly be made often and this is no bad thing. However, it’s their distinctive vocal harmonies, the vintage American guitar sound and their personal and quirky lyrics that make them unique – they are not just “another Honeyblood” or Hinds or Dum Dum Girls or any other band you wish to name.
Growler is the lead single from the EP and gets the hairs on the back of my neck tingling as the Van Thompson twins honey-dripped but feisty vocals kick in. The track has a raw, live sound full of reverb and energy that complements the grunge-rock attitude they put out.
Title track Laguna Babe starts off slowly before the fizzing drum beat fires it up into fuzzy, fast, surf-infused rock and roll. Feel, Touch, Feel has a more straightforward garage rock style but it’s still hard to resist shaking your head in time and swooning at those sugar coated harmonies. Another Sun takes a Best Coast sound and rolls it up in a package of fuzzing guitars, crashing drums and a ridiculously catchy chorus of “waiting for another sun, I know I know you’re not the only one”.
This band sounds like they’ve already spent an eternity touring in (and being influenced by) America so it’s surprising when you discover that they haven’t. I can’t wait for them to just get on tour outside of Scotland so I can get carried away by their live performance. For now, I’ll have to settle for listening to the EP on repeat when it’s released via Bloc+ Music on 13 November.
Surf’s up – The Van T’s are on the horizon and rolling your way.