12 Songs, 36 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Cincinnati’s Tweens serve up punk-pop with the usual sugar rush of sweet harmonies and amped-up rhythms. It isn’t until “Stoner” that the band slow down; that track turns out to be that most unusual of instrumentals where no one takes a solo and it feels like someone forgot to mix the lead vocal to the front. However, before this unusual break, the songs—“Bored in the City,” “McMicken,” and “Be Mean”—charm, with singer Bridget Battle showing off her brassy vocals and love for Ronnie Spector and Cyndi Lauper. “Stoner” segues into “Don’t Wait Up,” and the somewhat subdued pace works in the band’s favor, bringing together an album highlight that’s both reflective and plenty alive. Signs of garage rock spring to life with “Rattle + Rollin’” and “Hardcore Boy,” where Tweens sound like they recorded everything way too loud at the local roller rink for maximum impact. “Want U” is the ballad that feels as if it’s going to blow at any second yet never does. The bonus track “I’m Gonna Steal Your Boyfriend” sounds like the title suggests: a Ramones-like take on vintage Phil Spector–style pop.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Cincinnati’s Tweens serve up punk-pop with the usual sugar rush of sweet harmonies and amped-up rhythms. It isn’t until “Stoner” that the band slow down; that track turns out to be that most unusual of instrumentals where no one takes a solo and it feels like someone forgot to mix the lead vocal to the front. However, before this unusual break, the songs—“Bored in the City,” “McMicken,” and “Be Mean”—charm, with singer Bridget Battle showing off her brassy vocals and love for Ronnie Spector and Cyndi Lauper. “Stoner” segues into “Don’t Wait Up,” and the somewhat subdued pace works in the band’s favor, bringing together an album highlight that’s both reflective and plenty alive. Signs of garage rock spring to life with “Rattle + Rollin’” and “Hardcore Boy,” where Tweens sound like they recorded everything way too loud at the local roller rink for maximum impact. “Want U” is the ballad that feels as if it’s going to blow at any second yet never does. The bonus track “I’m Gonna Steal Your Boyfriend” sounds like the title suggests: a Ramones-like take on vintage Phil Spector–style pop.

TITLE TIME
3:09
1:54
3:03
2:56
2:46
2:49
2:58
2:58
3:04
4:22
4:06
2:02

About Tweens

Self-described as a "nasty, doo-woppy band," Cincinnati's TWEENS borrow from their hometown's rock history as well as from bad-girl punk from the '70s through the '90s. The trio formed in April 2012 when vocalist/guitarist Bridget Battle began playing a Dixie-Cups song with drummer Jerri Queen and bassist Peyton Copes in the practice space of the house they shared. It was very different musical territory than the trio's other projects: Battle was a member of the electronic noise band Public Housing, while Queen and Copes played in the experimental punk act Vacation. Soon after forming, TWEENS began playing local shows and released a cassette of cover songs, Live @ Mohawk. The band got a big break in 2013 when it was recommended as an opening act for one of the Breeders' Last Splash reunion gigs by the owner of a local record store. After playing that show, TWEENS were brought on for much of the Breeders' East Coast dates and for their entire West Coast tour. Between these shows and dates with the Black Lips, the band still managed to record its self-titled debut album with Eli Janney at Brooklyn's Saltlands Studio, and TWEENS was released in April 2014. ~ Heather Phares

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