Born in London, Louise Aubrie spends quite a bit of time in New York, when she’s not back in her homeland. That time in America may explain why she sounds a lot like American women who have spent time in the U.K., notably Chrissie Hynde and the Go-Gos. Indeed, on her third album, Late 44, Aubrie is helped by loads of ‘80s-era players whose collective resume includes work with Adam Ant, Dexy’s Midnight Runners, The Polecats, and Morrissey.
It all starts with the very Pretenders-esque “Masterstroke.” Aubrie croons a bit more than Chrissy Hynde, and the song itself has a sparse arrangement, which works to its advantage.
“Tearjerker” is early Go-Gos, but again with Aubrie’s fingerprints clearly present. “Perfect Battle Cry” starts off like Nick Lowe and features Cowboy Outfit-era Western guitar in the bridge, but it too finds original footing. It seems once you have that “a-ha” moment (er, that Norwegian trio is not an apparent influence) Aubrie changes gears and focuses on her on style.
Overall, though, the songs just don’t leap off the album. Sonically it’s very pleasing, and there are a few hooks and melodies that might linger, but unfortunately not enough to warrant repeat listens. “Next to Nothing” comes closest, featuring a smooth vocal performance, but most of the rest of the tracks can’t close the deal.
6 Stars out of 10
PF Wilson has been writing about music, TV, radio, and movies for over 20 years. He has also written about sports, business, and politics with his work appearing in Cincinnati CityBeat, The Houston Press, Cleveland Scene, Cincinnati Magazine, Cincy Magazine, Atomic Ranch, and many more. Check out his podcast PF’s Tape Recorder available from Podbean or in iTunes.