More a collective than a band, Girls Say Yes is actually the concept of one Jim Huie, a journeyman drummer with an until now unfulfilled ambition. On the evidence of this project, those talents until now sadly untapped, have been awakened to great effect. Girls Say Yes and their debut album' To Boys Who Say No' is teeming with joyous and accomplished pop music that is rich in diversity and executed with flair and imagination. The band's name, the album's title and the sleeve art were inspired by an anti draft campaign poster from the 60s at the time of the Vietnam War. Virtually entirely written by Huie, the album has taken more than three years to complete. Recorded in a multitude of studios across the U.S. and Canada and featuring what seems like a cast of thousands in support, (well I counted at least twenty ), the finished article sounds like a potential classic. Hopefully it won't be a lost one. It's a sad fact that even though albums as good as this are few and far between, the dictates of marketing and commercial pressures just won't allow the album to be found, let alone heard by the size of audience it deserves. Covering a multitude of influences, from the Eastern-flavoured psychedelia of the album's opener Another Life via the roots-pop twang of Don't Call Me, the 80s funk-tinged pop of She Married A Loser to the 60s vocal pop à la The Association or The Millennium of Burning Inside Out, the points of reference may be relatively easy to identify, yet the material is as fresh and invigorating as it is derivative. The long list of contributors includes Mitch Easter, Adam Marsland (Cockeyed Ghost), Russ Tolman (True West) and Bobby Sutliff (The Windbreakers) with most of the mixing having been handled by Tom Mallon (American Music Club, Thin White Rope). Overall though it's the efforts of all those involved in the support of Jim Huie's vision which make the album so memorable. Girls Say Yes 'To Boys Who Say No' is an exceptional debut and a rare beacon of light in an ocean of mediocrity. -Geraint Jones
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