REVIEW: Roxy Girls – A Wealth Of Information EP (Moshi Moshi Records)

Sunderland post-punk outfit Roxy Girls have become one of the North East’s most talked-about young bands over the last three years.

Describing themselves as “discordant Mackems in every which way”, the four-piece are hewn from the same indie guitar-toting template as fellow Wearsiders The Futureheads a generation before them.

Their self-titled debut EP, released in 2018, and last year’s mini-album A Poverty Of Attention earned plaudits from the likes of BBC 6 Music (including sessions for Marc Riley and Tom Robinson), BBC Radio 1, NME, DIY, and Clash, among others.

The back end of last year saw them earn a growing reputation for their angular live sets supporting bands including The Murder Capital, Du Blonde, Thee MVPs and The Futureheads themselves.

Now they’re back with a second mini-album, and it’s full of even more frantic songs which show how much they’re growing in confidence as a band.

Roxy Girls – A Wealth Of Information (Moshi Moshi Records)

Comparisons to post-punk pioneers such as Gang Of Four and XTC are inevitable, but the sound they make is a very modern take on the genre.

Not one of the seven tracks here makes the two-and-a-half-minute mark, and the shortest, Commands, is just 1:06, but they pack more ideas into these intricate bursts than many bands manage in a whole album.

Frontman Tom doesn’t so much sing as chop out the words, amid a sea of urgent instrumentation which shows how far the band have progressed as musicians.

Roxy Girls supported The Futureheads at Northumbria University in Newcastle in December 2019. Pic: Gary Welford.

Some of the twists in direction are unexpected; just when they seem to be settling into a satisfying groove, off they go again at a dizzying tangent.

New single Get Up (Seize The Day), which rounds things off, is probably the best track, and, for me, their most Futureheads-like to date.

Roxy Girls’ progress as a live band might have been halted for now by the coronavirus pandemic, but their upwards trajectory is showing no signs of slowing. 7/10.

Gary Welford owner