A two word review of the superb second album by Glaswegian quartet Chris Devotion and The Expectations would be easy: it rocks.

Devotion and co play an uptempo style of guitar based music that takes its influences from throughout the ages. It has the energy of punk, the more melodic and fast paced attitude of new wave and the ballsy swagger of classic rock. The end result is an album of eleven fresh and exciting tracks that hurtle relentlessly forward in an electric storm of emotion and power chords.

Saddest Thing opens the album with a tale of love gone wrong, a relationship that began with wild nights out ending with divorce papers. The strident Don’t You Call On Me takes this one stage further; there is no let’s stay friends here as bitterness drips from the vocals. And one of the album’s best tracks, If You Want To Leave, sounds like an early 80s classic. It could be something John Peel would have had on repeat, yet it isn’t dated. The guitars backs vocals that reflect on good times, yet also portray regret, and soar in fine fashion come the chorus.

But it’s not all gloom and doom by any means. She Is The One is a Ramones style love song with a heady cocktail of desire and longing packed into a blistering 95 second long adrenaline rush. The bass heavy Looking For Another Girl has a similar theme, but is more melodic with one of the simple yet memorable choruses that abound on this album. At over four minutes long it almost sounds like an epic.

And there are breaks from the all out aural assault too. When The Girl Comes To Town starts slowly with a more reflective tone. Some lovely lead guitar work adds flair to a simple sound and when the power chords kick in they emphasise the melody rather than overpower it. On The Line Closes the album in comparatively gentle fashion, a bittersweet song that describes a growing chasm between two people who once loved each other with a beauty that only draws attention to its inherent sadness.

Chris Devotion and The Expectations take a no nonsense approach to creating rock music. Their songs are generally short and to the point, and have an infectious quality, with melodies and hooks aplenty. Break Out is a fine album that packs a massive amount of energy and creativity into just 35 minutes. It has the feel of an exhilarating live performance recreated on a studio album, and that’s no easy trick. But they have pulled it off to perfection.

Released: Mon 2nd Jun 2014