Rock Action – January 27th
Written in bursts every few months when London/Glasgow duo Sacred Paws would travel to each other’s hometowns, Strike a Match is a ten-track run of cheerful indie pop gradually written between two cities.
There’s no question that Sacred Paws – made up of Trash Kit’s Rachel Aggs and her former Golden Grrrls bandmate Eiligh Rodgers – have developed a signature sound here, but in doing so, they sometimes run the risk of becoming repetitive. Album opener ‘Nothing’ launches the record with an infectious riff that continues throughout the track, but ‘Rest’ and ‘Everyday’ appear to follow a similar technique, failing to differ significantly from the album opener.
‘Empty Body’ is one album highlight however, returning to the more minimalistic sounds that featured on the band’s Six Songs EP. ‘Wet Graffiti’ takes the form of a chilled pop track that we’d probably expect from Best Coast, before title track ‘Strike A Match’ speeds things up with a post-punk atmosphere and quick, catchy beat that transitions smoothly into next track ‘Stars’.
Nearing the end of the record, the band’s sound effortlessly evolves into a joyful helping of punk-fuelled surf-rock, courtesy of the aptly named ‘Ride’, while ‘Voice’ returns to the indie-pop vibes of the first half of the record, this time picking up the pace a little. ‘Getting Old’ brings the album to a close with an indie-rock approach in which Aggs’ vocals bear a resemblance to that of the Ting Ting’s Katie White.
Ultimately, Strike A Match is a high-quality record that showcases Sacred Paws’ own brand of upbeat indie pop. It may lack a little diversity in sound, but it’s a solid foundation for whatever happens next.