Irises - Not Good In Bed
Writer: Jaclyn Arndt
there anyone who doesnt love sarcastic wit?
Thats right people, the correct answer is NO.
Power pop duo The Irises realize this and use it to
the best of their ability on their debut album Not
Good In Bed. The title offers up evidence to
the attitudes of Roxanne Heichert (vocals) and Stephen
Quinn (guitar), but their lyrics do it that much better.
The catchy track Lo-Fi Girl is the shiniest
example of this. Sadly the entirety of the songs
lyrics cant be written out for this review,
but a tongue-in-cheek anthem this good shouldnt
be passed by. The entire album is beautifully brazen
in a highly amusing way, and on top of this The Irises
music is rather good. Hiecherts melodic voice
is powerful and raw, while Quinns guitar work
creates a constantly droning, sometimes jangly backdrop,
with all the sounds melding into one another like
a hyperactive childs finger-paints. Not only
is Not Good In Bed good on first listen,
but it gets better each time its played. No,
just because it would be tragic if a few snippets
of Lo-Fi Girl lyrics werent included
Im your lo-fi girl/ No longer riot grrl/ I found
a tune!...All my super friends are here/ On the guestlist
drinking beer/ That they got from me/ Theyre
standing right beside the stage/ Barely past the drinking
age/ Wearing 1970s gear. Sigh. Gotta love satire.
By Shawn Conner
Publish Date: 16-Sep-2004
Not Good in Bed (Anka)
Irises aren't doing anything new on Not Good in Bed.
The debut from the new outfit led by vocalist Roxanne
Heichert and guitarist Stephen Quinn, the album sounds
as though it could have been recorded in the mid '90s,
when female-fronted power-pop bands like the Primitives,
Madder Rose, and Bettie Serveert were placing indelible
melodies against a backdrop of distorted guitars.
Even Not Good in Bed's format of 10 compact songs
clocking in at just over 30 minutes and sequenced
like a two-sided vinyl record is decidedly retro.
is in no way a fault, at least to these ears. Heichert
and Quinn have been honing their songwriting skills
for nearly two decades, first in Go Four 3 and then
in Thrill Squad, and their ability to craft perfect
two- and three-minute songs has only improved. Heichert
has just the right amount of spit and polish in her
voice for indie-rock come-ons like "Lo-Fi Girl",
and Quinn's guitar tones range from riff-centric power
chords in "Say You Want Me" to shimmering
arpeggios in the lullaby "I Cry I Sleep"
to a glorious buzz in "If I Was a Boy".
The disc is best when the rhythm section of former
Odds members Doug Elliott and Pat Steward really takes
off, but even Not Good in Bed's slower moments are
manna from heaven for guitar-pop fans.
The Irises - Not Good In Bed
The band describes themselves thusly: " Lulu
meets Cheap Trick, Glam powerpop rock with more hooks
than a tackle box.". Okay, we'll bite. There's
definitely plenty of gorgeous (female) vocal harmonies
and hook- laden melodies that linger, take root and
take up residence. There's plenty refreshing jangle-pop
and bit of cool glammy vibe that creeps in here, then
there. From the opening crashing guitar chords of
"What's Gonna Happen Now" to the bittersweet
conclusion of "Betty's On Parade," The Irises
move from soaring to searing vocals, with lyrics that
cut deeper than Ginsu carving knives, and picture
perfect melodies. They sounds *a lot* like old favorites
from the early 90's like The Primitives, The Hummingbirds,
The Katydids and The Darling Buds. Remember, them?
Well, if you don't-- -get this and be vastly rewarded
for taking a chance. Oh yeah.....there's that early
Blondie thing but, again, it's nothing to shy away
from, only embrace warmly, affectionately. Very Highly
Panartist, London UK:
Not Good in Bed
Arranging: 9 out of 10
Producing: 9 out of 10
Engineering: 9 out of 10
the way of Cranberries, Oasis and indie bands alike.
The Irises possess a very significant and identifiable
pure indie flowery sound. Built around great guitar
riffs and pop tunes the album seems compact and the
production solid..the band has a matured musical approach
and their ideas are strong. This record demands attention
for that reason alone plus guitar sounds and production
is indeed polished... check for the "Perfect
Boyfriend" track to be a hit!
August 10, 2004 p. B5
By: Tom Harrison
Quinn and Roxanne Heichert return but, if you liked
their previous Thrill Squad or Go Four 3, The Irises
maintain a high standard of power-pop melody with
biting guitar. Roxanne is singing better while Stephen
still sounds like a one man orchestra.
August 1st at the Los
Angeles International Pop Overthrow festival as
part of the VH-1 Save The Music show.
gig to several thousand party goers on Canada Day
July 1st 2004 at Castle Park in Port Coquitlam BC.
deal signed with NOMA
Music, Los Angeles.
- April 2004:
Boyfriend playlisted at WBER
in New York after over 1000 Internet votes launched
the song on to their regular rotation.
2004 review ICON Magazine (USA):
sound like Dido, Sixpence None the Richer, and the
Cranberries. This album is for the hopeless romantic
and is pure rock pop at its best.
tracks "What's Gonna Happen Now", "Perfect
Boyfriend" and "I Cry I Sleep" are
featured in the indie film Some Lucky Bastard.
of the week at Indie-Connections
USA download site.
Female Musicians website USA as one of the best