Lacking in that something extra
Charlie Brock
12:25 22nd April 2021

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Newcastle three-piece The Pale White are hot property right now. With a strong back catalogue of singles and EP’s behind them, they are finally releasing their debut album, Infinite Pleasure.

Fans have been waiting years and discussions and rumours have been rife, but The Pale White’s long-awaited debut is finally upon us. It opens strongly, too. the title track is a brilliant blend of catchy, indie-style riffs and falsettos, contrasted well with big, fat, meaty bass hooks. This is a track that will get the pit going early doors at a live show. 

Palatable, radio-friendly rock mixed with filthy, sludgy basslines then takes up as the theme for the rest of the record. Adam Hope’s vocals are strong, and he particularly shines on 'Glue' - another track that encourages both lighter-waving and circle pits. 'Glue' flows nicely into 'Take Your Time', a track that has a really upbeat, catchy Kim Deal style bassline but doesn’t seem to go anywhere else. This is the easy listening, accessible rock but without any of the filth that made the opening tracks more enjoyable.

'That Dress' flows like a Queens of The Stone Age track, right down to the desert-sessions sound. There are multiple guitar hooks and a solos here that appear like pages torn out of the Josh Homme playbook. 

The influence-on-sleeve theme continues apace with 'Medicine', which sounds like it could be right off of a Nothing But Thieves album. Arctic Monkeys style “woo-woo”’s appear. 'Sonder' sounds like a late-era Kings of Leon track, a broadly enjoyable tune that ticks all the right “rock n roll” boxes, but wouldn't sound out of place on an advert for the Kia Rio

'Nothing Lasts Forever' is another stadium anthem style track. I can already see the bucket-hatted lads on their mate’s shoulders belting this one out in the summer sun. Can of Dark Fruits anyone? Look, these boys are clearly very talented musicians, but the songwriting is formulaic. Most are the sort of tracks that get spoon-fed to Radio X listeners. 

Closing out with 'Frank Sinatra', The Pale White take a stab at cultural references with the lyric “Brexit for breakfast” and others about your favourite Netflix series. This track showcases both the best and worst of The Pale White. Seemingly uninspired, they break into a great, classic rock guitar solo with Beach Boys style backing vocals (your dad will like this one). But again, the songwriting lacks intrigue.

Overall then, Infinite Pleasure starts strong before tailing away. These massive, filthy hooks are great, but they soon take the album in a passive and forgettable direction. The Pale White's legions of fans will love this album and it will appeal to Catfish and the Bottlemen and Nothing But Thieves fans, but for me it lacks that something extra to take it to the next level. 

Infinite Pleasure arrives 23 April via AWAL.

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Photo: Press