Review by Ian Savage
‘Versatile’ is probably the adjective that best sums up Givvi Flynn: a fully-trained contemporary vocalist who moves between stage shows, studio sessions, vocal coaching and guest spots with some of the brightest stars of the UK underground scene (Ginger Wildheart, The Loyalties, Jackdaw 4 et al), she has taken time out to run a Pledgemusic campaign of rock-oriented tunes, producing and performing alongside Jay Clarke and Eli Cameron.
Thieving From The Magpie’s Nest comes out swinging with ‘Good Guys’, a catchy-as-herpes bridge section leading into a lyrically barbed chorus that pushes all the right attitude-laden female-fronted rock buttons; think rockier Pretenders/P!nk/Donnas and you’re in the right ballpark. Givvi almost certainly wouldn’t relish the ‘female-fronted’ tag, mind; given a few listens much of Thieving From The Magpie’s Nest transcends gender to become simply ‘bloody good rock songs’.
Ginger Wildheart lends his pen and ear for a hook to second tune ‘Without Emotion’ (certainly not a nearly-ran for one of his many projects by any stretch) and ex-Jackdaw 4 / Honeycrack mainman Willie Dowling has donated both tune and vocal/keyboard/guitar talents for ‘Dirty’, another piece of the pop-rock mastery of which he’s always been capable. Great songs, both, and delivered with conviction and aplomb.
The covers on the album are slightly more hit-and-miss. Of the four (FOUR!), The Tubes’ ‘TV Is King’ and Duran Duran’s ‘The Chauffeur’ hit the spot: fine, strident versions with worthwhile twists on the originals; Slade’s ‘Everyday’ is a little more, um, everyday (not bad by any means, but just one of those songs that you need a VERY good reason to do a cover of); and Danny Fry & The Devildolls’ ‘Dirty’ is almost toe-curling in its Meat Loaf-esque boogie-woogie/country feel.
Sprinkled amongst these are another half-dozen of Givvi’s own compositions; the bouncy Eureka Machines-esque ‘Seven Day Summer’ and the closing title track being highlights, big guitars sitting behind well-crafted harmonies with the album’s consistently solid production. ‘Thieving From The Magpie’s Nest’ is mostly well worthwhile, but a couple of tracks feel nigglingly like filler; with some judicious editing this could have been a superb ten-track album. As it is:
7.5 out of 10
- Good Guys
- Without Emotion
- TV Is King
- Seven Day Summer
- More Beauty Than Before
- Penny Arcade
- The Chauffeur
- I Did It Again
- Thieving From The Magpie’s Nest