If Savages brilliant post-punk debut record, Silence Yourself was London's 2013 calling, then four piece PINS' Girls Like Us is Manchester's full throated reply. As the album title would suggest, PINS are also an all-girl band but this is the least consequential of the comparisons. Both bands take their cues from early new-wave, both have buried these cues in layers of unashamed distortion and both appear to be having an absolute ball in the process.
After a brief intro, first single and title track, 'Girls Like Us' catapults the listener into the rest of the record with three thrilling minutes of pure rock. Front-woman, Faith Holgate stands out throughout the record with a barely wavering bravado underpinning both her lyrics and song writing as she battles swarms of guitars and busy drums which at times threaten to sweep her away altogether.
Where the Savages comparison breaks down is unfortunately where PINS fall ever so slightly short. The swagger and the sound is all there but there’s a sense that the band haven’t completely tapped the vein they’ve been aiming for. In addition, the frequent musical and spoken word interludes in the downtime between songs serve only as a handbrake on the albums pacing which would otherwise be free flowing. As it is, Girls Like Us is a rewarding experience whose ambition outweighs its execution. Expect this to not be the case next time round.