22-20s 22-20s

[Heavenly/EMI; 2004]

Styles: garage rock
Others: Jet, Rolling Stones, the White Stripes

A British band playing blues rock -- sound familiar? Hold your horses, don't run off on me yet; it's not as bad as you might think. In this day of reviving of revivals, there are bands that prove to be rather worthy. The 22-20s immediately present their cred to the skeptics with their actual band name, which is a nod to Skip James. But is that really enough?

You're probably wondering if you should you be running from the stereo. "Are the 22-20s the White Stripes or Jet?" Well let's see -- there's the obligatory acoustic number ("Friends") and the obligatory grinding downtempo song ("Baby Brings Bad News") and the 22-20s must have figured at this point, "what the hell, we'll make the rest all the same." So I'm thinking they lean more towards the ever-denim clad Jet more so than the ever-cred heavy Jack and Meg. There also appears to be a big Stones influence here. I think these guys may have listened to Aftermath and Beggar's Banquet a few too many times (or the entire Stones back catalogue for that matter). The melodies don't always stand up for the 22-20s, and the lackluster lyrics are far from the likes of Jagger/Richards' best.

The 22-20s find themselves in a tough position. They could easily become considered another rock revival band that hangs on tight to the successful formulas of the past, or they could just as easily be heralded as a legitimate act. Time will only tell which side of the amp they fall off of, but the band seems vehement about proving themselves in both interviews and on stage. We will see if they garner the credibility a band like this needs to survive. I personally have my doubts, and I think they might as well.

1. Devil In Me
2. Such a Fool
3. Baby Brings Bad News
4. 22 Days
5. Friends
6. Why Don't You Do It For Me?
7. Shoot Your Gun
8. The Things That Lovers Do
9. I'm the One
10. Hold On