Patti Cake Maybe Partying Will Help

Patti Cake Maybe Partying Will Help
Toronto-based band Patti Cake have been making audiences twist and mosh since their 2011 debut, The Prime Minister of Cool Chicks, pairing the syrupy hums of '60s girl groups with the fearless attitude of '90s grrrl groups. Now, the pop-rockers, who sound like the lovechild of the Ronettes and Sleater-Kinney, have rekindled their romance with nostalgia on their new EP, Maybe Partying Will Help.

Significantly less jangly than the last album, the five-track release puts greater emphasis on pluck rather than kitsch, making for a much cleaner and more balanced effort that shines with style and substance. Frontwoman Kritty Uranowski's voice is big and full-bodied, quivering confidently alongside doo-wop harmonies that provide cheerful accents to scrappy guitar riffs.

Maybe Partying Will Help also stands strong lyrically, despite a few mindless, indulgent moments ("Ghost Cat"). Bygone times are cited with intelligence and wit, ranging from sentimental musings ("Making Tapes," "When I Was Yr Age") to sharp pop culture references ("Lindsay" — an ode to the notorious party girl).

Sincere and displaying creative growth, Maybe Partying Will Help verifies that Patti Cake are much more than just a retro concept band. They pull their shtick off and do it well, mixing technical chops with songwriting flair. (Independent)