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Givvi: Tomboy

You aren’t muckers with the likes of Ginger Wildheart and Willie Dowling unless you have a certain something, and let’s just say that Givvi Flynn is already well known for not just larking about with those two ridiculously talented chaps, but also helping to make some of the music they create even better than it would have been without her. Tomboy may only be this singer, guitarist and much else in the musical world’s second album, but then she’s also Deputy Principal at The Voice college and a vocal coach. Those titles alone should assure that we’re going to be in safe vocal hands on Tomboy, but seriously, you haven’t heard the half of it. Power, passion and precision are all bywords for what a Givvi vocal hammers home but you didn’t come here for a singing lesson now, did you? Just as well that she’s also bloody well detonated this album out of the park! Tomboy is, for want of a better phrase, quite extraordinary.

This lady’s acquaintances may well already guarantee that any power rock poppers in da house will be right at home here and then some - especially when you realise that the mixing master himself, Dave Draper (The Wildhearts, Nickelback, Terrorvision, [spunge], Kerbdog) has leant his magical powers. However, that’s just the tip of the iceberg on a considered and crafted album that rocks like its very life depends on it but which also possesses a pure heart, clear vision and powerful message - be yourself, be proud, don’t judge, don’t regret and don’t just leave it to others to bloody well sort it all out. Live by those edicts and you too can be a Tomboy, no matter your colour, creed, or any other damn well thing. Tomboy is an album to make you question what’s around you and compel you to look deep within yourself and yet it’s also a rollicking good time of powder keg riffs, rucks and don’t give a fucks.

“Say Something”, where Givvi herself is loud hailered up purely to grab your attention, sits in the sort of dirty riff driven groove that makes you breathe just that little deeper, just so you can bellow out the chorus that you already know is going to explode with more force than you thought possible. “Versions” shows the diverse complexity on display, layers of almost Bowie meets The Beatles via The Wildhearts guitar chimes swirling against a pure, irresistible vocal that lulls and soothes. And yet, just as you settle in for a tear jerker, drums hammer down with the sort of force usually reserved for a weather event that expects you to batten down the hatches and take cover. That’s the extent of the moods and atmospheres perfectly meshed here - and if your blood isn’t pumping as your hairs stand on end during the pulsating bass-line, then I’m sorry, doctor, we’ll need to check this patient’s pulse!

Incredibly the torrent of emotions simply never lets up, “If This Is It” gratefully receiving the nomination for hook of the year, whereas “How Could I…?” plays it cool with a lightly mid-paced country edge and a beat that urges you to simply give yourself over to this utterly infectious concoction. And yet, quite incredibly, there’s simply no let up, “Too Much” an ever evolving chameleon that reveals this album’s heart, “Mamma” a simple but massively rewarding piece of country rock, “Fixed” a potent potion of captivating, considered power, and “Antisocial Media” a prowling comment on the stare at your hand generation.

“Tomboy” itself sums it up beautifully, a riff The Ramones chewed out decades ago given a pop sneer that demands you stop judging by your own preconceived ideas of who and what everyone else might be. As fuck you’s go, it’s really rather splendid. And that, in a nutshell, also sums up this album. Captivating, energising, thought provoking and the most fun a shit-flinger of year could ever have spat out. It may not be the vaccine that stamps out a world pandemic, but Tomboy is pretty much the cure to anything else that might get in your way. Get it in your system and never let it go.

Track Listing
1. Say Something
2. If This Is It
3. Mamma
4. Fixed
5. Versions
6. Antisocial Media
7. Totally Thrown
8. How Could I…?
9. Too Much
10. Tomboy

Added: November 28th 2020
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Givvi @ bandcamp
Hits: 1594
Language: english

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