Registered: Feb 2012
Location: Mountain View, Santa Clara, California
The lineup: Louis Oliver Jones (vocals, instruments), Will Jones (drums).
The background: We realise that rock'n'roll is a US invention – we're not that thick – but who came up with the idea of scuzzy Americana, the Yanks or the Brits? Do we count Ramones as the first exponents of scruffed-up traditionalism, with their punky take on surf'n'Spector, or should that honour really go to Psychocandy-era Jesus and Mary Chain? We were wondering this as we listened to today's new act, Spectrals – not to be confused with Spector, or indeed Spectrum – because this Leeds-based 21-year-old is very much in the vein of a Stateside bedroom garage/doo-wop balladeer such as Idiot Glee, and we didn't know who should be thanking who.
Or you could think of Louis Oliver Jones, who is Spectrals, as a Brit, male Best Coast. A northern Brit male Best Coast – if his voice had any more Yorkshire grit, Jones would be Alex Turner. Think of Spectrals as the direction Turner might have taken had Last Shadow Puppets been more influenced by the Shangri-Las than the Walker Brothers. Jones's voice apart, Spectrals are totally in hock to early rock'n'roll – not the greasy, high-energy stuff, but the spectral (a-ha!) ballads from that era, the pop stuff, the doo wop. If Jim Reid had made a solo album in 1986, it might have sounded like this. In fact, it's the solo album James Allan of Glasvegas is probably considering making even as we speak.