The Cherry Dolls – ‘Viva Los Dolls’ (Golden Robot Records) Print E-mail
CD Reviews
Written by Ben Hughes   
Wednesday, 29 November 2017 04:20

The Cherry Dolls artworkWith a name like The Cherry Dolls you immediately think “glam band”, right? Yet, if you called this Australian mob “glam” they would probably punch your lights out. As The Cherry Dolls are more garage rock than cock rock and have more in common with the raw, primal rock ‘n’ roll of ‘70s Detroit than the glamour of the ‘80s LA Sunset Strip.


Their debut album ‘Viva Los Dolls’ was recorded earlier this year in a matter of days, with Alex Markwell of The Delta Riggs at the helm. Ten tracks and a running time of 30 minutes… no messing about.  Released back in the summer in their native Australia, ‘Viva Los Dolls’ gets a UK release just in time for Christmas.  So, let’s find out just why you should be adding it to your wish list.


What is it about Australian rock bands that makes them sound so real, so authentic? Maybe it’s the hard touring, the small club venues and the rabid audiences - or maybe it’s just in the genes. Well, The Cherry Dolls wear their influences on their denim clad sleeves, and the Melbourne five-piece, complete with 70’s porn moustaches and shaggy Spinal Tap haircuts, are keeping it as real as can be.


They mix up their rock n’ roll influences nicely on ‘Viva Los Dolls’. Opener ‘C.O.P. Out’ is reminiscent of The Strokes with its smart guitars and rumbling bass, as vocalist Joshua Aubry rants about local law enforcement and the joys of spending the night in jail. Yes, at times The Cherry Dolls sound dangerous on this album - and that’s what we want from a rock n’ roll band, right?  The primal groove of ‘Hollywood’ has a definite Stooges feel to it, as the bass and drums pump out a deeply, dark rhythm and Joshua spits a bile induced lyric over filthy sounding guitars...nice!



They come on like fellow Aussies The Vines at times too, the bouncy groove of ‘Love’ and especially on the awesome ‘Slave’, with its killer bashed out riff, handclaps and cool as you like backing “c’mon-c’mon’s”.  Spaghetti western guitars mix things up nicely in ‘Bottom Of The Well’ and tremolo effects add a cool feel to the slowly building ‘Kimchi’. The Cherry Dolls are raw, yet their melodies and song structures take them above your average garage rock band.


They take things down over the course of the 30 minutes too. The lone guitar notes of ‘Lemon & Lime’ echo through the speakers, haunting and ethereal, surely it’s their hangover song. This theme continues on ‘Begging You Please’ with its indie-fied swagger mixing up haunting vocals with a Mary My Hope/BRMC ethereal groove.


Album closer ‘Blister’ is a three-minute epic with a timeless, bluesy feel to it. A sense of yearning, that tremendous feeling as the hairs rise on your arms on first listen. It’s one of those songs that has the power to stop you in your tracks. It’s Exile-era Stones, full of sentiment and passionately delivered. Lyrically, about the passing of a loved one, it shows a more melancholy side to the band.


There’s more to The Cherry Dolls than your average garage rock band. The song structures and the melodies lift ‘Viva Los Dolls’ above your average stoner, garage rock band. They have a fire in their collective bellies and a heart full of soul - and surely that’s a good enough reason to add this album to your wish list this Christmas.


‘Viva Los Dolls’ is out now. You can get your copy HERE.


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