This is a review of "Magpie" recorded by Working With Kenzi. The review was written by Russell Leeming in 2006.
If we’re going by aesthetics, then Evanescence (or rather, Amy Lee) meets Madonna is probably a good thing, depending on your taste. You'd have to be a Conservative politician on Hampstead Heath not to realise that.
Musically however, I can’t think of many things worse. Gary Barlow meets Motorhead perhaps? Victoria Beckham joins The Magic Numbers? The Darkness? Following this, it’s a struggle to rack the brain of unthinkable suicide inducing possibilities that are indeed, less appealing.
Thankfully, there is another comparison on the press release that is much nearer the truth - “a darker Belle and Sebastian”. Hooray.
Working With Kenzi were formed in 2004. Their two years together shows in ‘Magpie’. They are one of those bands that it is impossible to dislike, or not sit up and take notice to.
Magpie begins with a tepid brooding movement before darting off into a punk assault. It sound blissfully drunk; not the tightest music you’ll ever here but a rewarding authenticity.
The singers voice is (reluctant word use) lush, but for some reason reminds me of (albeit a much lower tone) the chipmunk who used to sing in JJ72. The major criticism would look to the production, as much of the guitars are buried in a moment where they could really give the song a further edge.
The B-side is a stripped down affair entitled ‘Love on a Shoestring’. Despite the ‘acoustic strum’ having B-side written all over it, it passes for a lovely substitute to the punk fuelled ‘Magpie’. The lyric “the only thing I have is a dream” speaks for all of us, and certainly Working With Kenzi, and there looks to be enough potential here for that dream to have a bloody good chance.
Go forth and destroy, titans.