Sahara Hotnights - Kiss & Tell (Cover Artwork)

Sahara Hotnights

Sahara Hotnights: Kiss & TellKiss & Tell (2004)
Sony Music

Reviewer Rating: 3.5

Contributed by: greg0rbgreg0rb
(others by this writer | submit your own)

On their major label debut, the four ladies of Sahara Hotnights feel the need to fit in. While their breakthrough Jennie Bomb was tough, gritty and exciting punk suggesting The Clash and early Blondie influences, "Kiss and Tell", with it's bouncy feel and poppier exterior suggest something more alo.

On their major label debut, the four ladies of Sahara Hotnights feel the need to fit in. While their breakthrough Jennie Bomb was tough, gritty and exciting punk suggesting The Clash and early Blondie influences, "Kiss and Tell", with it's bouncy feel and poppier exterior suggest something more along the lines of The Cars. Their bio lists them among the girls' listening material while on tour, as well as The Go-Go's and Cheap Trick. The pop rock leaked into their brains and affected them: "We decided we wanted a bigger, poppier sound, hoping to record an album that makes you want to dance." They sure did it, but with the state of popular indie music it sounds like they're ditching their rough sound to ride the coattails of other up-and-coming dance bands like The Killers, Franz Ferdinand and The Faint. Even their brothers in crime The Hives went in a Devo-type direction adding some synths and dancier beats to their repertoire, but the boys didn't give up any aggression. The girls do, but all of this aside, the results are surprisingly pleasant. After reading harsh reviews in AP and some other places, I feared the worst but didn't get it.

The album makes you bob your head from beginning to end, so mission accomplished. "Who Do You Dance For?" starts it off strong with a concise and catchy dance song, very different from the fist-pumping rage of Jennie Bomb's opener "Alright Alright". There are bits of their old songwriting leftover in harder tunes like "Walk on the Wire", with its fuzzy lead guitar and gang vocals in the chorus, but even those tunes are masked a little behind the big budget production (produced by Pelle Gunnerfeldt who did the new Hives as well). The vocals are clear in the mix taking the guitars out of the forefront, and synths make quite a few appearances like on "Empty Heart" with a few blips and swooshing sweeps, adding to the 80's feel they were going for. They don't go nuts with the keys fortunately; they only appear sparsely in a handful of the songs.

The new sound aside, I enjoyed every track, but thought there were no obvious "singles", the same way I felt about their preceding effort. The previously mentioned opener and "Empty Heart" could be contenders as well as "Nerves", a tune that could have fit on Jennie, or "Stay/Stay Away", a very Cars tune with synths harmonizing guitars and handclaps abound, and maybe "The Difference Between Love and Hell" with its pumped up disco beat to make you stomp along. Wait, I just found that "Hot Night Crash" is actually the first single, and that's a good one too with an intense tempo and some shout-along backup vocals. Well that's like half the tracks so I think I have proven my point: This is a solid album, and if you can get over the change of direction, you can see this is still the same group as before. They are not riding coattails; they still have their own sound but they just want to rock you a little differently this time around.


People who liked this also liked:
Dinosaur Jr. - I Bet On SkyThe Hives - Lex HivesYou Blew It! - Grow Up, DudeJapandroids - Celebration RockBeach House - BloomThe Smiths - The SmithsThe Fagettes - Volumes 1 & 2 [cassette]Pretty Girls Make Graves - The New RomanceDead Ellington  - Refuse EPIslands - A Sleep & A Forgetting

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Great album, no bad track and these girls are fucking hot!

Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Being women rockers I'm sure that Sahara Hotnights probably deals with this stuff in a personal basis on a far worse level than some dumb joke. I'm sure they know to take any comment that anyone on this site would say with a grain of salt, probably their response would be "what a douch bag" or something and I wouldn't blame them - you don't find me funny that's fine you can ignore it like most people do, instead because you feel you are so pc, you have to call me on it to make you feel that you are making some sort of change in the world. You look down on me from your high horse thinking you are a better person than me because you are pc. As for racist jokes - I have no problem with jokes dealing with race. If you think that makes me a racist, that's your opinion, but for the record I am hispanic and I have friends and family of multiple races, and we know and understand the difference between a joke and hate. It's one thing to talk about something, but it's a whole other thing to act on it. I didn't mean to start a debate on this so I'm not responding to anything else you write.You have you views, I have mine and respect yours, but I understand that mine won't change by what you say and vice versus. At least we can agree that mental and physical abuse of women or anyone for that matter is wrong. There are many songs that speak against violence, racism, war, and sexism but I feel that they don't change peoples views, they only streghten the views of those who agree with that message. I think that we probably differ on that view, but that's what is great about America - speaking our minds. Peace.

Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Anonymous wrote:
"but me making crude jokes is not going to encourage people to act out on them "

Face it, dude, your jokes are not funny! Maybe I should start making jokes about niggers, spics, kikes, gooks, and pakis. And hey, I'll just to everybody to shut the hell up, cuz I'm only joking.

Think about it.

Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

I'm glad that you're opposed to physical and mental abuse, but tell me, how are your comments anything but mental abuse? If someone hadn't called you on it, anyone who read it would have assumed that there was a dangerously unstable man running around threatening punk rock women. And you better believe that effects the way other people think and behave.

I recognize that you intended your comments as a joke, but there are a lot of people who post those type of thoughts on this site (see the Tsunami Bomb review) and it's impossible to distinguish where one person's joke ends and another person's fucked up world view begins. And without some kind of contextual explanation, you just end up being part of the problem.


Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Yeah I "get it" but the problem is these people who take stuff seriously not people like me with our "embarassing sense of humour" - people who would act on crude sexual comments are the type of people who would act out against women without the comments - it is a mentality that they have, and it just isn't the bad frat boy stereo type, other stereo types of people have that same mentality, you make it sound like frat boys are the only people that get off on abusing women. It does suck that guys in this society get off by making women feel underneath them and it will never stop - but me making crude jokes is not going to encourage people to act out on them just as people speaking out against abusing women isn't going to change people with that mentality to do so - this is the world we live in and there will always be men who feel the need to be jerks and abusive to women - I am not one of those people and I am not friends with any of those types of people, otherwise I would kick there asses if I ever heard of them doing something mentally or phsicaly abusive to a woman.

Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Blatantly "off the wall" or not, you're still thinking it and writing it and there are enough people out there who take it seriously that it's a fucking problem. The world really doesn't need more bad frat boy stereotypes, and it sure as hell doesn't need your embarrassing sense of humor. Still don't get it? Take a listen to Strike Anywhere's first Jade Tree album; the comments you made contribute to a culture of fear that stalks nearly half the fucking population. If that isn't bullshit, I don't know what is.


Anonymous (October 15, 2004)

Greg - lighten up there are so many up tight people on this site who take everything so serious. Everything I write is always so blatantly off the wall that most people see it for what it is, a joke, yet there are a few who take stuff like that seriously and get bent out of shape about it - maybe you are in need of a good donkey punch - see Greg that was a joke, I would never donkey punch someone nor would I want someone to actually dunkey punch someone and anyone who wasn't uptight would not take a statement like that seriously.

greg0rb (October 14, 2004)

Yeah. So you're one of those people I see. Anonymous, why?

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)


greg0rb (October 14, 2004)

Wow, some rampant sexism goin on here. Shut the hell up.

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

these peepl sound like the fukin donnas

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

I've got a really big nutsack - I mean seriously really big balls - that said I think I want to tea bag these girls, just let my sack really steep in their mouths, than I would give them all a pair of arabian googles while their cd played, which would be followed by the lead singer going down on me - I would pull out before I came and shoot it in her face saying "Whose the Boss" than cock slap her as I say "Tony Danza" - this cd rocks

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

Garage-rock's about to go out, so the record label find out what all those hip, happening kids are listening to, and what's in right now. The 80s, you say? Well, that's what your next album's going to sound like.

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

This band just plain sucks! They're about as edgy as Lilix.

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

everyone too busy to notice that girls can't rock? these girls are like if the donnas were less terrible but still so terrible you want to pull your own head off. very little is more pitiful than girls trying to "rock it up"... seriously, no matter how many times its failed, some other dumbass girl will buy and electric guitar and try to be tough. let it go, its making me sad.

Anonymous (October 14, 2004)

Haha, they dress like gay men.


TheNightProwler (October 13, 2004)

I saw these gals live with The Hives and they were just very generic rock sounding.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

this is a FUCKING AMAZING album.... cant get enough of it. i want to party with sahara hotnights sooo bad.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

The Swedish are a bunch of socialists with their Stalinist health care system. The American Nativist Party supports blotting out this red spread.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

i hate dancing

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

This album is so fucking disappointing. I thought Jennie Bomb was amazing and really looked forward to this.

Sugar coated fucking crap.

Boo to bands who sign to majors and change their songwriting looking for a radio hit. Boo!!!

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

They should've added more keyboard.

When the tinc chick plays with them now she just stands there fot the most part.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

Took my 15 year old daughter to see SH, they rock hard live! Nice girls too, they came out of their tour bus in the pouring rain to pose for a pic with my daughter.
Took my wife to see Morrissey, slick show. He let the venue staff hustle him past my wife and a handful of polite fans into the bus and took off. Girls are nicer.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

Sahara Hotness. The Runaways weren't a bad band either...


Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

id tap that

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

I´ve seen them live many times and they always put on a good show.

Anonymous (October 13, 2004)

I've heard her sing live. Holy shit, my ear is bleeding.

Anonymous (October 12, 2004)

AP: Abnormal Penises

Anonymous (October 12, 2004)

Good review. I enjoy "Stay/Stay Away" and "Hot Night Crash". They sound like a better version of The Donnas.

maverick (October 12, 2004)

Well, what does AP know, anyway.


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