1997, May / The Eyeliners
When was the last time you couldn't get a song out of your head? You know, one of those songs that plays over and over inside your brain every moment you're awake. It's about to happen again. "Won't Be Long" the third track on Confidential, The Eyeliners' Sympathy For The Record Industry full-length debut contains a hook so infectious that its a wonder they didn't get signed sooner than they did. It takes skill to write melodies that stick - most bands are lucky if they can pull it off once on an entire album. The Eyeliners pull it off repeatedly, though, both instrumentally and with vocal melodies - often adding inspired background vocals to the hookiest parts of the verses and choruses to further the effect.
Things have come around rather quickly for The Eyeliners. The three sisters - Lisa, Laura, and Gel formed Psychodrama just under two years ago, changed their name several months later and proceeded to catapult to respectable indie status with their self-released single and a couple of key opening slots. Anyone who was ridiculous enough to write them off as a novelty in the beginning need only take a listen to Confidential. The proof is in the pudding. The punk rock anthems come one after the other - "Big Scoop", "Six Years", and "Broke My Heart" (also available as the A-side of the Eyeliners SFTRI 7-inch) for instance. Although they cite, among others, The Ramones and The Muffs as influences, The Eyeliners have gone from simply beating out effective, three chord pop-punk tunes to thoughtfully arranging well crafted songs and carving out their own niche. And the most notable advantage the record has over The Eyeliners live sets is the fact that, perhaps for the first time, listeners are able to discern the intricacies of the individual instruments.
Rhythmically, the songs are fast and furious - with Lisa's bass lines walking in and out of each power chord and Gel's guitar filling in all the right blanks. Guitar solos, in true Ramones fashion, are sparse, to the point, and instantly "hummable". As both vocalist and drummer, Laura has gradually established herself as a powerful presence - and her job isn't an easy one. Overall, Confidential has all the ingredients any good punk record should have - great songs, extraordinary hooks, solid performances and find production courtesy of Sally Browder. It's The Eyeliners' Rocket to Russia - clean, full of hooks and a record that's certain to stand the test of time.