Garbage has their heir apparent.
Cat, Noog, Bangsy and Denley form: 'Sal', the South-Wales phenomenon fast becoming the band of 2005. 'Dysfunctional' is the album every teenage girl should own, not because it's filled to the brim with the usual pop "don't let him take advantage of you" froth. Teenage girls should own this album because, if they listen to the lyrics and take them to heart, they will rejoice in their individuality and make a huge difference to the quality of society. 'Tomorrow I'll be Gone' is a darkly disturbing track which makes grown men weep and re-examine their treatment of the women in their life. 'Suffer in Silence' tells the tale of a young woman's relationship with a violent drunk she used to know as a kind, caring human being; never has the plight of those affected by substance abuse been portrayed so elegantly. 'Perfect' is both an anthem and an assault on stereotypes, misconceptions and men who should have learned how to treat a woman by now. Here, Sal echo the brilliance of Dido's 'Hunter' and 'Don't Think of Me' and the lyrical intensity recalls Alanis Morisette's 'You Oughta Know'.
Cat's vocals add a haunting lilt to all twelve songs on the album and the power of her voice could stop traffic. She has the gothic presence of Amy Lee from Evanescence and the strong, confident, defiant attitude of Garbage's Shirley Manson. Legend has it that this rather jaded music reporter was spotted in Swansea HMV recently, smothered in dust after opening his wallet for the first time since the Luddite rebellion. Legend also has it that a reviewer will never enjoy anything he hears again. He will always be critical and shall never again listen for pleasure. Sal has broken the legend. They excite the critics and electrify the public. Those with pre-release copies will buy the album on general release and the phenomenon will grow into a movement. Legend also has it that a duet between Sal and The Subways would be pretty close to a musical orgasm.
'Dysfunctional' is unintentionally ironic because, in actuality, it is anything but dysfunctional. It's a powerful record with a twist of mellow observational humour thrown into the mix along with a bleak sigh of relief that the majority of emotional problems can be penned into music. You'll play 'Dysfunctional' again and again and you'll spend all day talking about it with your friends and neighbours. It's not an album. It's a moment in history. We finally have a female fronted rock band that produces some of the finest, emotionally charged songs ever. Garbage has their heir apparent.