Album Review

Cat's Eyes

Cat's Eyes

by Cat's Eyes

Polydor Records
7.5 / 10
5th October 2011

Reviewed by Nik O'Connell

Cat's Eyes is a duo comprising of The Horrors frontman Faris Badwan and Canadian soprano Rachel Zeffira. Launched earlier this year (January 24 to be precise) the duo picked the Vatican in Rome to announce they had joined forces and unleashed their track I Knew It Was Over along with a host of other songs, some of which did not make the final cut.

Zeffirras softly quant voice accommodates Badwans deep and elongated verses nicely. On opening track ‘Cat's Eyes’ Faris creeps into his work softly backed up by Zeffiras background echoes, it reeks of sixties girl-group pop but has a rather dark edge to it. It is mysterious and with all good mysteries the audience is treated to a rather pleasant surprise of which is the depth of this album and the quality of it.

Where some pop musicians write about happy endings and falling in love this album has a very realistic side to it. The heartbreak that many may be familiar with is poured out frequently throughout and this gives it some real emotional attachment. “Don’t try to tell me you’re the only one, you’re not anyone at all” Cries Farris in 'Face In The Crowd' a song about ones unreciprocated feelings toward another and the harsh reality that is dished out in a rather unforgiving manor “I’ve never had trouble finding girls I don’t need”. Ouch. I can only Imagine the sight of Faris getting up out of bed to leave some damsel strewn out amongst a clatter of sheets as he arrogantly departs the scene.

The reality of this album is that Zeffirra and Badwin compliment each other well. Both from differing musical backgrounds but with an obvious appreciation and an understanding that pop music can have a rather haunting dark side to it it is this darkness that gives Cats Eyes some emotional attachment thus ensuring the album has feeling. I have always found it interesting what inspires people to write the songs that they do and this album is no different. ‘I’m Not Stupid’ opens with the lyrics “I’m not the prettiest girl, I’m realistic, I know I’m alright, I’m not stupid, I can see she’s better than me”. Rejection sucks huh Rachel. The accommodating sound is made up of piano keys being lightly tapped and partnered with some long screeching licks on a violin. Depressing.

This is an album that has some serious feeling to it. Heartbreak and confusion feature throughout but this is one side project that could only get stronger as it comprises two musicians in their youth who are clearly interested in branching out and challenging themselves.

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