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Chris Devotion And The Expectations: Break Out

New-wave swagger from suited and booted Glaswegian.

If music were mathematics then new wave would be best described as punk rock divided by power pop minus anger. It’s from this late-70s/ early-80s genre that Glaswegian roustabouts Chris Devotion And The Expectations take inspiration.

The direct guitars, with occasional smatterings of Hammond organ and Devotion’s curled-lip delivery is reminiscent of dozens of British bands from this era. But whereas politics, mental health and street life informed the lyrics of Elvis Costello, the Ramones and The Ruts, Break Out is anchored firmly in ‘songs about girls’ territory – and in particular the subset marked ‘revenge for being chucked’.

The ridiculously catchy Looking For Another Girl (nothing to do with Billy Bragg) recalls The Cars’ Best Friend’s Girl. However, like most of the tracks here, it packs a sharp punch and plenty of hooks, but lacks the wit to lift it above just being a homage.