Anyone who considers the Beauties "just a bar band" will be pleasantly surprised by their debut album. While the Dakota favourites could easily have treated the full-length as a recorded document of their rollicking, booze-soaked live shows, they instead crafted an album of legitimately strong, diverse rock songs.
Those familiar with the band's live heroics will get satisfaction from the shout-along blues hooks of Tired Fired Blues and Die Die Die, while Hearts Are Down offers up twangy, catchy pop balladry, and a cover of Holly Golightly's Devil Do pads its populist chorus with heavy riffing and crisp production.
Not everything works, like the six-minute dirge Heaviest Of The World, but the album still proves that the Beauties have outgrown their bar-band roots.
Top track: Devil Do
The Beauties play Lee's Palace tonight (Thursday, June 17), midnight, and the Toronto Island Concert Saturday (June 19), 1:15 pm, as part of NXNE.