Album: Jon Fratelli, Psycho Jukebox (Island)

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The Independent Culture

On his solo debut, Jon Fratelli continues to mine the knack for an infectious hook that powered the ubiquitous "Chelsea Dagger".

But none of these 11 tracks has quite that adhesive power, and occasionally his determination to emulate it – as with the "la-la-la" chorus of "She's My Shaker" – becomes irritating. But his grasp of heritage pop is reliably firm, with the album's myriad period influences, from the Byrdsy arpeggios of "Rhythm Doesn't Make You a Dancer" to the Springsteen-style retro-R&B of "Daddy Won't Pay Your Bill", strengthened by the raggedy edge to Fratelli's vocals. And although his lyrics sometimes work better in fragments than as full songs, lines like "You're perfectly sweet, like a sadist" and "The jukebox won't play no Sinatra, it just curses all night long" have a pleasing tang of originality about them.

DOWNLOAD THIS Daddy Won't Pay Your Bill; Oh Shangri La; Tell Me Honey